The first day of the FIFA Women’s Football Convention 2019 was packed with fantastic presentations – complete with powerful messages – as well as inspiring stories. Advice and examples of best practice were shared, with the overall goal of enhancing the development of women’s football.
Here you can re-watch the opening day’s presentations, while below we have highlighted some of the most pertinent quotes from Paris.
⤵️ Download the full agenda here and find the session that most interests you.
What they said…
“If we really want to achieve viable and sustainable growth in women’s football, we have to run the rule over every factor in its ecosystem. Of course, more funding would be a tremendously positive change, but in most countries what we actually need is a cultural change, a change in perception.”
Sarai Bareman, FIFA’s Chief Women’s Football Officer
“We’ve talked a lot about the ‘what’ and ‘how’ in terms of boosting women’s football, but we’ve forgotten the ‘why’ – because more balance will give us better football.”
Hakan Sjostrand, General Secretary of the Swedish Football Association
“My father raised me to make my voice heard and to be capable of making my own decisions, and that’s how I’m able to be here today. There are still things that you can’t talk about in my country. But there’s no line in the Koran that says that a woman can’t play football.”
Fatuma Abdulkadir Adan, Executive Director, Horn of Africa Development Initiative (HODI)
“And after the World Cup, what are we going to do to keep women interested in football? Women have great leadership skills. That should be our legacy, that there should be women in leadership roles at all levels in the world of football, because they have a very important part to play at the very core of this sport.”
Jacky Cerveau, Vice-President of the Normandy League
“This is a key moment: this is going to be the biggest and most significant Women’s World Cup in history, and you must grasp this opportunity in each of your countries, whether they’re participating here or not. This is just the beginning. It doesn’t just depend on organisations; it depends on each person who happens to give a little girl a chance.”
Karina LeBlanc, Head of Women’s Football, CONCACAF
“The audience for women’s football in the United Kingdom has increased by 500% in the last five years. That is unprecedented in any sport. I’ve never seen it before.”
Barbara Slater, BBC Director of Sport
“Opportunities, equality and respect. We must give more access to girls, who are often not allowed to use the same training pitches as boys, for no particular reason, and ensure that female footballers can earn a salary, among other objectives.”
Laura Youngson, Co-founder, Equal Playing Field and Ida Sports
PARIS, FRANCE - JUNE 06: A general view of the panel between Fabimar Franchi (L), Veronica Boquete Giadans (C) and Monica Vergara Rubio (R) during the FIFA Women's Football Convention at Paris Expo Porte de Versailles on June 06, 2019 in Paris, France. (Photo by Hannah Peters - FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images)
PARIS, FRANCE - JUNE 06: A general view of the panel between Mikael Silvestre, Brigitte Henriques, Jean-Claude Hillion, Alain Martin and Jacky Cerveau during the FIFA Women's Football Convention at Paris Expo Porte de Versailles on June 06, 2019 in Paris, France. (Photo by Hannah Peters - FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images)