The FIFA Women's World Cup is one of the most anticipated international events in the world of Football, displaying the extraordinary talent and passion of female players from all around the world. Set to take place in 2023, the upcoming tournament promises to attract fans worldwide as nations compete for the prestigious title. 

However, despite the enthusiasm and anticipation, a concerning issue has emerged - the lack of broadcast rights for the event in certain regions, including the Philippines. This predicament raises serious issues regarding the recognition and support given to women's football, prompting us to reflect on the persistent disparities in the sports world.

In an era where sports events are readily available on traditional broadcasting platforms, it is disheartening to learn that the Filipinas' World Cup stint may be confined to streaming services. This predicament not only diminishes the potential exposure and recognition for the team but also deprives local sports fans of the opportunity to rally behind their own national heroes.

It is crucial for local broadcasters to recognize the importance of showcasing women's football and take proactive steps to secure the rights to air such prestigious tournaments. They may contribute to promote an inclusive atmosphere, motivate young females to follow their football aspirations, and serve as role models for the future generation of players by doing so. Furthermore, broadcasting women's football games can help to break down gender preconceptions and promote gender equality in sports.

FIFA's decision to separate the broadcast rights for the men's and women's World Cups has led to ongoing negotiations and, in some cases, disputes with European countries over perceived undervalued offers. It is imperative for FIFA to encourage fair and equitable negotiations that allow countries, especially emerging nations like the Philippines, to have a reasonable opportunity to showcase their women's football teams on a larger scale.

By mandating separate rights for the women's and men's World Cups, FIFA aimed to give the women's tournament the spotlight it deserves and create opportunities for commercial success. However, the stark contrast between the offers made for the two tournaments reveals a disheartening reality. Broadcasters, both public and private, have offered significantly less for the Women's World Cup, sometimes even 100 times less, compared to their bids for the men's tournament.

This glaring discrepancy is unjustifiable when considering the comparable viewership figures between the two events. The previous Women's World Cup drew an astonishing 1.2 billion viewers, with the final alone capturing the attention of 263 million people worldwide, surpassing even the revered Super Bowl. Despite such impressive viewership, broadcasters continue to undervalue women's football, disregarding its immense potential for commercial success.

The Philippine Football Federation (PFF) acknowledges the challenge but suggests exploring the possibility of negotiating a lower price with FIFA to make the broadcast rights more accessible. While delivering statewide coverage for the Women's World Cup may need considerable efforts and concessions from all parties concerned, the long-term advantages certainly exceed the short-term financial considerations.

Furthermore, media corporations must understand the potential worth and marketability of women's sports. They may tap into a rising fan base and help the development of the sport in the country by investing in women's football broadcasting rights. This, in turn, may attract sponsors and endorsements, open doors for grassroots initiatives, and improve the general level of women's football in the Philippines.

In conclusion, the lack of a local media bid for the FIFA Women's World Cup 2023 emphasizes the critical need for increased support and investment in women's football in the Philippines. By addressing the challenges surrounding broadcasting rights and fostering partnerships between stakeholders, we can ensure that our national team receives the recognition, exposure, and support they deserve. Let us seize this opportunity to bridge the gap, empower women's football, and inspire a new generation of aspiring players around the country.

Amaranth Online Newsletter

Be part of our awesome online community!