The American Express Community Stadium has been named as one of nine match venues for the UEFA European Women’s Championship in 2021.
We worked together with Brighton & Hove Albion and Brighton & Hove City Council to support The FA’s bid back in August, and the stadium will now host top-level European football in three years’ time.
The FA’s decision to bid was part of its ‘Gameplan for Growth’ strategy to grow the women’s game, and followed the successful Euro 2017 campaign in the Netherlands which saw the Lionesses reach the semi-finals, generating a record peak audience of four million TV viewers in the UK.
That success was followed by a best-ever showing at the SheBelieves Cup in the United States in March 2018 and qualification in August 2018 for the 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup next June.
The bid proposes a spread of host cities and stadia of varying capacities, a year after hosting the equivalent final for the men's tournament at Wembley.
The proposed cities and stadia are:
• Brighton & Hove - Amex Stadium
• London - Wembley Stadium connected by EE
• London - Brentford Community Stadium
• Milton Keynes - Stadium MK
• Manchester - Manchester City Academy Stadium
• Nottingham - The City Ground
• Rotherham - AESSEAL New York Stadium
• Sheffield - Bramall Lane
• Southampton - St. Mary’s Stadium
Albion Chief Executive and Deputy Chairman, Paul Barber, commented on the successful bid: “This is fantastic news for the football club and the wider Sussex community as a whole.
“Our stadium has a proven track record and a growing reputation for hosting some of the world’s biggest sporting events, and it is great that we will have the chance to do so once again.
“We will continue to work very closely with Sussex County FA and Brighton & Hove City Council, in supporting The FA with hosting such a prestigious tournament.”
Albion’s Women’s Football Chair Michelle Walder said: “I am delighted for all concerned, and would like to congratulate The FA on their successful bid.
“This will greatly help to raise the profile of women’s football as a whole, and it will be fantastic to welcome some of the top female players in Europe to our stadium.”
Sussex County FA Chief Executive, Ken Benham, commented: “We’re delighted that some of the finest female players from across Europe will be showcasing their skills right here in Sussex.
“The tournament has the power to inspire and we hope it will encourage more people into the game.
“We have opportunities for all ages and abilities to get involved with football, so we’re really looking forward to the increased exposure the championships will bring to the local area.”
Councillor Alan Robins, Chair of the Council’s Tourism, Development and Culture Committee, added: “We’re over the moon to hear the news – it’s a great early Christmas present. It’s a fantastic boost for women’s football in the region and a great accolade for the city.
“As a host city we have a real opportunity to help raise the profile of women’s football locally and nationally.”
The next key date will be the draw for the qualifying group stage, which will be held on 22 February 2019. Following that, the qualifiers will be played from August 2019 to September 2020 to determine 12 of the finalists, with the play-offs determining the last three entrants in October 2020.
For further information on the successful bid contact The FA:
T: 0800 169 1863