CHICAGO (Monday, Sept. 15, 2003) - Tickets for the FIFA Women's World Cup USA 2003 are continuing to move fast for the upcoming competition, with more than 280,000 being sold since the public sale began back on July 19. The high-rate of ticket sales across a 54-day period has fueled interest in the 32-game, 16-team competition being played in six venues across the United States from Sept. 20 to Oct. 12, 2003.
"We are tremendously pleased by not only the support we've received from the soccer community, but the general community, as well," said U.S. Soccer president Dr. S. Robert Contiguglia. "We think the reaction has been wonderful and know that the atmosphere and excitment at these stadiums is going to make for an exciting environment for all the teams competing. We are all in store for a great competition, no doubt about that."
Columbus Crew Stadium could be the first venue to sell-out a game, as fewer than 1,000 tickets remain for the U.S. Women's National Team's "Group A" finale against North Korea on Sept. 28. Columbus has sold 50,200 tickets for their three doubleheaders, behind only Washington, D.C. and Los Angeles in total tickets sold.
For the U.S. opener on Sept. 21 against Sweden at RFK Stadium, more than 27,000 tickets have been purchased. Combined, the three doubleheaders in D.C. have sold more than 57,000 tickets. In Los Angeles, 52,500 tickets have been sold for the two doubleheaders in September and the third-place match and final on Oct. 11 and 12 at the new Home Depot Center.
In Philadelphia, the response to the tournament has been very strong, with 48,000 tickets being sold for two doubleheaders, including the USA's match-up with Nigeria on Thursday, Sept. 25. More than 50,000 tickets have been sold for three doubleheaders in Portland, Ore., and 24,000 tickets have been sold for two match dates in Boston.
"Our goal from the beginning has always been to make sure that this tournament is staged in a manner worthy of its stature in the sporting landscape," added Contiguglia. "We feel that through a number of long work hours and through the help of our soccer family and member organizations, we have achieved that. That is the ultimate measuring stick for our success."
As evidence of the building fan buzz and media attention, U.S. Soccer conducted a media conference call on Wednesday (Sept. 10) with U.S. WNT head coach April Heinrichs and defender Brandi Chastain and had 95 participants on the call, a record for the U.S. Women's National Team and the second largest call ever for U.S. Soccer. And that total came on just 24 hours notice.
The U.S. Women's National Team gathered in Charlottesville on Saturday to begin five days of training and will relocate to Washington, D.C. on Sept. 17 to prep for their FIFA Women's World Cup opener against Sweden on Sept. 21. That game will air live on ABC at 12:30 p.m. ET, one of 18 games in the tournament to be aired live on ABC, ESPN and ESPN2.