WSL record revenue indicative of women’s football growth

credit: Shutterstock
credit: Shutterstock

England’s Women’s Super League (WSL) has broken its revenue record for the 2022-23 season highlighting the growth of the women’s game in the country. 

According to Deloitte, WSL revenue reached £48m last year, a 50% increase from the £32m generated in the 2021/22 season, and significantly higher than the £20m during the 2020/21 campaign. 

The four WSL clubs that brought in the most revenue were Arsenal, Chelsea, Manchester City and Manchester United respectively. 

In terms of commercial revenue brought in the league by clubs, the 2022/23 season generated £17m, with Manchester United bringing in the most with £5.2m. 

Manchester City came in second with £3.6m, Liverpool generating £3m and Tottenham bringing in £1.7m. 

Deloitte forecasts that the previous 2023/24 season is expected to break the revenue record again by reaching £52m, and again in the 2024/25 season with £68m, projecting a bright future for women’s football which has been growing in the UK year-on-year. 

Significantly bolstered by England Women’s European Championship victory in 2022, the WSL has been reaping the rewards, setting attendance records for league matches with 689,297 in total attendees from the previous season. 

Viewing figures are also expected to rise thanks to a recent broadcast deal between the WSL and its partners BBC and Sky Sports, broadcasting more games than ever before ahead of the 2024/25 season. 

There is more success off the pitch as well, as the WSL secured a record £9m-per-year title sponsorship agreement with UK bank Barclays

With Deloitte predicting further financial growth for the league in years to come, more sponsorship opportunities will arise as long as viewing and attendance figures continue to rise. 

Speaking to Insider Sport, Queenie Porter, Managing Director of WOW HYDRATE – sponsors of the West Ham Women’s team – revealed that women’s football can tap into certain sponsorship opportunities that the men’s game often neglects or does translate as better. 

She said: “Let’s take a theme park like Alton Towers for example, it would never want to sponsor a male football club because it’s such a captive thing. But there’s opportunities for theme parks, holidays and airlines to capture the women’s game.

“If you go to a men’s Premier League game, you just go there to watch the match, don’t you? At the men’s game, you’re not really that engaged to go buy a scarf or anything like that.

“I really want to see more women willing to get involved in the commercial element of football and just really celebrating the fact that the men’s game is incredible and they’ve learned from that, but they need to treat it as a separate entity and not just bolt onto the men’s.”

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