MONCTON – As Moncton prepares for its last game of the U20 Women’s World Cup Wednesday, organizers are already looking forward to next year.
Moncton will be one of the host cities for the 2015 Women’s World Cup in June 2015.
“We know that with the benefit of Moncton being an official host city for both tournaments, we really saw this as a learning exercise,” said Stephane Delisle, Venue General Manager for Moncton. He said the organizational team has already learned the importance of pacing themselves and eating and resting properly so that they stay healthy throughout the tournament.
They’ve also learned lessons on how to promote the tournament to spectators.
This year, about 3,500 people came to each game and one game reached 4,700 people. The stadium seats 8,500 people. But Delisle said they are confident that next year will be better, explaining that those who saw soccer games for the first time were impressed with what they saw.
“Many of them came back right away and were like, ‘I need to be there’,” Delisle said. “So the hope is that those people that experienced it are talking to their neighbours and friends and encouraging them if they didn’t come this summer that they’ll be back in June of next year. ”
The tournament had a positive impact for others in the region, including sports retailers.
“A lot of people going to the games and they want whatever team they’re going to see,” said Troy MacMillan, the store operations manger at Source for Sports in Moncton. “They’ll choose their side and want to support the team, so they’re always looking for that T-shirt.”
MacMillan said the store has seen an increase in sales of soccer jerseys and gear, with Team Canada T-Shirts being especially popular even if they didn’t play in Moncton.
“They still want to show their support for Canada,” he said. “They’re looking to go to the games and want to wear the red.”
Marc Leger, the executive director for Soccer New Brunswick, told Global News that he expects both tournaments will also have a positive impact on recreational soccer leagues in the region, explaining they are hoping more children and youth will sign up during registration season in April and May.