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BBC wins rights to Women's World Cup 2019 as it looks to build on success of last tournament

England's success at the 2015 tournament provided strong audience figures for the BBC

The BBC has acquired the broadcast rights to the 2019 Women's World Cup as the broadcaster looks to build on the strong viewing figures it enjoyed for the last tournament.

The BBC will provide extensive coverage of every game in France across its television, radio and online platforms.

"We're delighted the BBC will bring the biggest tournament in women's football to the widest possible audience," said director of BBC Sport Barbara Slater.

"Women's football has grown significantly over the last few years and we are proud of the contribution we have made.

"France 2019 promises to be another fantastic showcase for the sport."

The BBC also showed the 2015 tournament in Canada, which saw the England team reach the semi-finals, a feat which their male counterparts have be unable to achieve since Italia 1990 World Cup.

The team’s success drew in strong audience figures for the BBC, the semi-final match against Japan peaking at 2.4 million viewers on BBC One, with average viewing figures of 1.7 million. The BBC claims that up to 2.5 million UK viewers watched each game and 11.9 million viewed some part of the team’s journey.

Coverage of the Women’s World Cup has steadily increased over the years with broadcasters showing a total of 7,781 hours from Canada, representing a 31% increase on the 2011 competition, according to Fifa.

Fifa secretary-general Fatma Samoura said: "The seventh edition of the Fifa Women's World Cup in 2015 reached record-breaking numbers of TV viewers and social media clicks, underlining global interest in the world's biggest single-sport event for women.

"As excitement grows around the eighth edition of the competition, we are delighted to work with the BBC to broadcast the ultimate event in women's football to even greater audiences in the UK via the BBC's TV, radio and digital platforms."

Securing the rights to the Women’s World Cup will come as a welcome win for the BBC, which lost out to Channel 4 for the rights to the Women’s Euro 2017 tournament. The Open, Formula One and the Olympics are some of the heavy losses which the organisation has had to endure in order to help find an additional £550m of savings by 2021/22.

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