FIFA and the Local Organising Committee (LOC) of the FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup France 2018™ and the FIFA Women’s World Cup France 2019™ are delighted to welcome the SNCF on board as an Official National Supporter of the two tournaments. Noel Le Graet, President of the French Football Federation (FFF) and the LOC, signed the deal with Mathias Vicherat, Deputy General Director of the SNCF Group, at the FFF head office in Paris.
In entering into the collaboration, the SNCF Group, which is also the Official National Rail Transporter for both tournaments, has shown its commitment to accessibility, a value it shares with FIFA. As the second National Supporter of the two tournaments, the SNCF will connect the Host Cities with each other and the rest of the country, enabling football fans to enjoy one of the most festive and inclusive FIFA Women’s World Cups to date, starting with their journeys to the matches.
“We are delighted to welcome the SNCF as a National Supporter,” said Le Graet. “Given that it exists primarily to connect cities to each other, it is the perfect collaborator for a competition such as the FIFA Women’s World Cup, which aims to bring French people and football fans from around the world together in celebration of the same passion. This deal will be crucial to the success of these two FIFA World Cups in France, as the SNCF will play a key role in the organisation of the events and their successful staging.”
“The FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup 2018 and the FIFA Women’s World Cup 2019 will bring the best female football players to France for what is guaranteed to be a true celebration of the game across the country,” said FIFA Chief Commercial Officer Philippe Le Floc’h, commenting on today’s announcement. “FIFA and its commercial affiliates are committed to developing the women’s game, which is why we are thrilled to welcome the SNCF to our program. Their expertise in world class events and their logistical support are a tremendous asset to the tournament, the participating teams and travelling fans.”
“The SNCF Group’s 270,000 employees around the world are all proud of this collaboration,” explained Mathias Vicherat, Deputy General Director of the SNCF Group. “SNCF aims to become the biggest supporter of women in achieving success on the pitch and in business. The state-owned railway group currently employs six elite sportswomen through its SNCF Athletes Programme. Aside from the everyday duties they perform at the SNCF, these athletes are a source of inspiration for all of the company’s female employees. In dedicating its energies to linking cities and regions together, the SNCF has already acquired extensive experience as the official transport provider of major sporting events. The SNCF Group, which includes Geodis and Keolis, will make all of its know-how available to FIFA, the LOC, and the teams.”
The first of the tournaments that the SNCF will join as a National Supporter is the FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup in Brittany from 5-24 August 2018. The 16 teams qualified for the tournament will take part in 32 matches staged in four Host Cities: Concarneau, Dinan-Lehon, Saint-Malo and Vannes, which will also host the Opening Match, the Semi-finals and the Final.
Next year will see the SNCF give its support to the eighth FIFA Women’s World Cup. From 7 June to 7 July, the 24 teams qualified for the competition will play 52 matches in nine Host Cities: Paris (the venue for the Opening Match), Reims, Valenciennes, Le Havre, Rennes, Grenoble, Montpellier, Nice (where the play-off for third place will be held) and Lyon (which will host the Semi-finals and the Final).