MADRID (Reuters) – Athletic Bilbao set a new record for attendance at a women’s soccer game in Spain as 48,121 people watched their side’s Copa de la Reina quarter-final tie against Atletico Madrid on Wednesday.
The figure beats that of any attendances for Athletic’s men’s La Liga games this season, with 46,884 the biggest crowd at the 53,289 capacity new San Mames stadium for the derby against Real Sociedad in October.
It beat the previous Spanish women’s soccer attendance record – also held by Athletic Bilbao – when 35,000 turned up at their old San Mames stadium to see the Basque side defeat Hispalis to become league champions in 2003.
The club initiative of a 5 euro entry fees for the general public and free entry for season ticket holders, was lauded by the Spanish Football Federation, who congratulated Athletic for “writing a part of football history in Spain”.
Unfortunately for the home crowd their side lost 2-0 to last season’s finalists Atletico Madrid, with a goal in each half from Angela Sosa and Aurelie Kaci enough for the visitors who also had Kenti Robles sent off.
Holders Barcelona, Sociedad and Sevilla also made it through to the final four of the competition.
(Reporting by Joseph Cassinelli, editing by Ed Osmond)