Abby’s Sophie Schmidt On World Cup Sunday Stage – Attendance Records Falling

Vancouver/Abbotsford (CBC/Huffington Post) – World Cup knock out game is Sunday , 4:30PM at BC Place. Canada vs Switzerland. Attendance records are being set, that is the second half of this story.

52,000

Estimated number of fans who will be at BC Place Sunday making it a sellout.

“We really want to hear it in Vancouver,” says Team Canada forward Melissa Tancredi. “People need to realize that the crowd noise really help us. I can’t wait to see the sea of red.”

2,000,000+

Expected TV audience.

40

Percentage of Canadian girls between ages two and seven who have watched some of the group stage action on TV.

19

World rank of Team Switzerland.

8

World rank of Team Canada.
Also the jersey number of forward Diana Matheson who could see her first action of the World Cup Sunday. Matheson scored the bronze medal winning goal at the 2012 London Olympics. She is coming back from a knee and foot injury.

10

Number of consecutive winless games Canada has played against European teams leading into Sunday’s match versus the Swiss.

4

Number of B.C. players on the 23-woman Canadian roster: Christine Sinclair (Burnaby), Sophie Schmidt (Abbotsford), Karina LeBlanc (Maple Ridge), Emily Zurrer (Crofton)

Canada’s Christine Sinclair celebrates her game-winning stoppage-time penalty shot goal against China during FIFA Women’s World Cup soccer action in Edmonton, Alta., Saturday, June 6, 2015. (Jeff McIntosh/The Canadian Press)

154

Career international goals scored by Canadian captain Sinclair, the latest in stoppage time giving Canada a win over China in the opening game of the 2015 World Cup.

0

Level of nervousness of the Canadian players at kickoff time, at least according to 17-year-old Jessie Flemming.

“I think playing in front of a lot of people you start to get used to it,” says the midfielder. “Once we get on the ball and start playing everyone settles into their comfort zone.”

Now let’s talk about attendance:

Attendance for the Women’s World Cup will be at least 1.25 million, according to organizers.

That number, which denoted tickets already sold as of Saturday evening for past and future games, beats the tournament record of 1,194,221 set at USA 1999. That edition featured 16 teams and 32 games, as opposed to 24 teams and 52 games for the Canadian version.

“We’re feeling very good, we’re very happy,” said Peter Montopoli, general secretary of the Canadian Soccer Association and CEO of the tournament’s national organizing committee.

The number of 1.25 million will grow with the knockout round having just started Saturday but the tournament may not hit the original goal of 1.5 million spectators, a target Montopoli described as “lofty.”

The figures are somewhat misleading in that FIFA counts attendance at a doubleheader separately even though one ticket grants access to both games.

Still Montopoli says the figures show how front and centre women’s soccer has been in Canada. And he said soccer attendance records were set in Alberta (53,058), B.C. (52,193), Manitoba (32,716) and New Brunswick (13,138).

“I think that’s a strong statement,” he said.

The attendance could mean a profit for Canadian organizers.

Organizers say Sunday’s round of-16 game between Canada and Switzerland in Vancouver could break the record of 53,058 for a Canadian national team home game set June 6 in the tournament opener in Edmonton between Canada and China.

The Germany-Sweden knockout game Saturday in Ottawa was a sellout and a capacity crowd is expected for Sunday’s match in Moncton between Brazil and Australia.

The lone disappointment has been Montreal, although organizers hope the numbers will swell there if the U.S. progresses to the semifinal.

Montopoli said the Women’s World Cup may also erase the FIFA attendance record for a tournament other than the men’s World Cup.

The 2011 men’s U-20 World Cup in Colombia, which had the same number of games and teams as the Canadian women’s tournament, drew 1.309 million.

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