Four in ten English people intend to watch the 2023 women’s world cup final

Matthew SmithHead of Data Journalism
August 18, 2023, 2:27 PM GMT+0

Seven in ten English people say they will be pleased if the Lionesses win, amid growing interest in women’s football

This Sunday sees the England women’s football team facing off against Spain in the world cup final, and new YouGov data finds that more than four in ten English people (42%) say they intend to watch the match.

Prior to the semi-final against Australia, a quarter of English people (27%) told us they had intended to watch the game. In the event, 11.1m people did so, according to the BBC.

In June, prior to the tournament, only 16% of English people said they expected to watch much of the world cup. Fast forward to now, and 24% say they have done so.

The Lionesses’ success seems to have captured the imagination of many people who were less enthusiastic before the tournament. When we asked in June, 53% of English people said they would be pleased if the England women’s team won the world cup, including 34% who would be “very pleased”.

Now, with the prospect so tantalisingly close, this figure has risen to 69%, with 50% saying they would be ‘very’ pleased.

Pleased as they may be with a win, English people don’t see that as an excuse to take a day off. Following calls by Keir Starmer and others for a bank holiday to be held if the Lionesses win the world cup, a separate YouGov survey found English people opposed such a move by 48% to 41%.

Interest in women’s football has increased

In July, during the group stages, a YouGov survey found 21% of English people saying that they were interested in women’s football – ahead of England’s final debut that figure now stands at 36%. Men and women are equally more likely to have become more interested in women’s football.

Among those with an interest in football in general, interest in women’s football specifically now stands at 66%, up from 51%.

Photo: Getty