Women's Euro 2021: FA submits bid to host Women's European Championship

England celebrate reaching the Euro 2017 semi-finals after beating France
England players celebrate reaching the Euro 2017 semi-finals after beating France for the first time in 43 years

The Football Association has submitted a bid to host the Women's European Championship in 2021.

England hosted Euro 2005 and reached the 1984 and 2009 European finals.

FA head of women's football Baroness Campbell told BBC Sport: "It would be enormous to have a major championship like this on home soil.

"Uefa will want a bigger and better tournament than the last one and we've got Wembley as a key card to play, to host the final."

A final decision on the successful host nation will taken by Uefa on 3 December 2018, with Austria and Hungary also believed to be in contention.

The FA's decision to submit its bid, which has the backing of the government, follows England 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.

The proposed cities and stadiums included in the bid are Brighton & Hove Albion's Amex Stadium, Brentford's Community Stadium, MK Dons' Stadium MK, Manchester City's Academy Stadium, Notts County's Meadow Lane, Peterborough's Abax Stadium, Rotherham's New York Stadium and Sheffield United's Bramall Lane.

Chelsea Ladies lift the Women's FA Cup
Chelsea Ladies' won the 2018 FA Cup final in front of a record crowd of 45,423 at Wembley.

What is the state of women's football in England?

Women's football in England has grown since it turned semi-professional with the start of the Women's Super League seven years ago, with attendances in the domestic game peaking at an average of 1,128 after England finished third at the 2015 World Cup.

Last season, there was a record Wembley crowd of 45,423 at the FA Cup final but WSL crowds dipped, coinciding with a move back to a winter league after six years of summer fixtures.

In January, the FA announced an additional £50m of investment in women's and girl's football over the next six seasons, taking the total investment from the 2018-19 season onwards to £114m.

A positive showing under England boss Phil Neville at the 2019 World Cup in France would also help boost the game's popularity.

Neville's side are fourth in Fifa's rankings behind the United States, Germany and France, who they beat at the last Euros for the first time in 43 years.

"Our bid to host Women's Euro 2021 reflects our strong commitment to supporting and growing women's and girl's football in England," said the FA's chief executive officer Martin Glenn.

"We have invested heavily in the women's game in recent years and the opportunity to bring the tournament to England would represent a landmark moment for women's football in this country.

"Our aim is to make Euro 2021 the biggest and best showcase for women's football ever seen in Europe.

"We have not only the ambition, but the tournament hosting experience, infrastructure and incredible spectator demand to ensure we would deliver a truly memorable tournament."

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