Football could be coming home as England’s Lionesses kicked off Euro 2022 with a win and fans are flocking to be part of the feelgood factor.
With nearly 70,000 enjoying the electric atmosphere at a packed Old Trafford on Wednesday night, England’s women secured the first three points of the tournament with a 1-0 win over Austria.
The famous stadium is used to host big football nights and it was rocking as excited fans got into football fever as the Lionesses look to mark their place in the history books.
It is difficult to appreciate the scale of that number of people in one place as a sea of faces, heads towards the ground beforehand. With fans coming from around the country to enjoy the occasion, many used taxis to get as near to the ground as they could with the sheer volume of people and traffic.
It is something the region’s taxi drivers are well used to with Premiership as well as cup football games, and Old Trafford cricket ground just around the corner which has recently hosted a series of big-name music concerts, including The Killers, Red Hot Chilli Peppers and Harry Styles, in addition to first-class cricket.
As towns and cities welcome the influx of visitors, both in terms of teams and supporters from 16 countries, it is good news for the hospitality and taxi industries, which have been badly affected by the pandemic.
The sheer number of people means concertgoers and football fans rely on taxis to get them home once the excitement begins to subside, often trying to find meeting points to make it easier for everyone.
As the women’s Euros continues, this will be a scene repeated up and down the country as excitement continues to build with venues in Brighton & Hove, London, Manchester, Milton Keynes, Rotherham, Sheffield, Southampton, Trafford and Wigan & Leigh looking forward to welcoming the elite of women’s football.
The Lioness’ next match is against Norway in Brighton on Monday before taking on Northern Ireland in Southampton the following Friday.
It’s been 56 years since an English football captain has lifted an international trophy. Hopefully England’s ladies will go all the way to the final on July 31 and lift the trophy – something the men came so close to last year.
The last time England hosted the women’s competition was in 2005, when Germany lifted the trophy. The previous tournament was held in The Netherlands in 2017, when the home team was victorious.
In the World Cup in France in 2019, the Lionesses lost 2-1 to the United States in the semi-finals and had to settle for fourth place after losing to Sweden by the same score in the clash for third place.
As the tournament continues with Spain against Finland in Milton Keynes, and Germany taking on Denmark in Brentford, more fans are expected to watch the best in women’s football in action.
For all the dates, venues and other information about the tournament, visit UEFA’s website.
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