Scotland are reportedly one of seven nations that have expressed an interest in hosting the 2017 Women’s European Championship finals.
The Scottish FA were invited by UEFA to attend an observer programme during the EURO 2013 championships which start next month in Sweden – with the likes of Austria, France, Israel, the Netherlands, Poland and Switzerland also interested.
While France would be favourites, if they bid for the championships, Scotland could have a great chance to secure them given their continued rise up the European and world football rankings – currently sitting at 20th in the world and 11th in Europe.
Anna Signeul’s side sit just one place behind their Euro 2013 play-off victors Spain, who secured their place in Sweden with a last-minute goal to secure qualification with a 4-3 aggregate win.
Another thing going favour of a potential bid from Scotland being successful, is their participation in UEFA’s women’s football development programme.
This programme aims ‘to help its member associations develop and promote women’s football in their countries’. The countries participating in this are Scotland, Iceland, Norway, Denmark, Russia and Austria.
Such a programme would see the Scottish FA focus on the SWPL, ‘build their brand identity with clubs also encouraged to play an active role. Help increase attendances at women’s league matches, make the domestic league more attractive, and boosting revenue streams in the mid-to-long-term future’.
Scotland’s football infrastructure in terms of the men’s game would be able to cope with the requirements of the women’s championships [although the specific requirements for the 2017 finals have yet to be published]and off the back of the Commonwealth Games 2014 in Glasgow, that could prove pivotal in swaying the committee choosing Scotland rather than favourites France and the other potential bidders.
All potential hosts will have until October 2014 to submit their bids, with a decision set to be made in December of the same year.