England full-back Lucy Bronze has called for the Lionesses to tour the country in the wake of their Euro 2022 triumph and play for fans in various cities, particularly in the north.
Victory over Germany in the final at Wembley on Sunday secured their Lionesses their first major international trophy and England’s first senior silverware – male or female – in 56 years.
The Lionesses started their Euro 2022 campaign at Old Trafford in front of 68,000 people on an incredible night, but were then based on the south coast in Brighton and Southampton for their next three games. They played in Sheffield in the semi-final, before the final in London.
A friendly against the United States that has sold out in 24 hours will also be at Wembley.
The overall choice of host cities and venues for Euro 2022 was heavily criticised before and during the tournament. But FA chief executive Mark Bullingham confirmed in June that ‘very few’ major stadiums or cities put themselves forward for the selection process in 2019.
Attendances and television viewing figures for England matches confirmed the enormous interest in the Lionesses and Bronze has suggested there is now an opportunity to take the game to more fans in new areas and new stadiums, even if Wembley had been a fantastic experience.
“Wembley is great. I think the fact that we’ve been able to play at Wembley so much was an advantage for us. The support we have had around the country has been amazing. Old Trafford is a night that almost topped what happened at Wembley,” Bronze explained.
“Obviously, we have got so many northerners and people all around. Like I know for myself I’d love to play at St. James’ Park. We'd love to play at Anfield, Goodison Park, all these amazing stadiums that we’ve got in England. It would be amazing to travel the country and maybe give that a go.”
In the year leading up to Euro 2022, England played games in Wolverhampton (twice), Leeds, Sunderland, Doncaster, Middlesbrough, Norwich and Southampton, as well as at Wembley where 23,000 people watched a 4-0 win over Northern Ireland.