How Viktoria Berlin is changing German football

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By Creative Media News

FC Viktoria Berlin is a team with ambition. Currently competing in the Regionalliga Nordost, the third tier of women’s football in Germany, they want to reach the Frauen-Bundesliga in five years – and alter the game in Germany along the way.

This year has already seen numerous events. They are presently under independent control from the men’s club. The Frauen at Viktoria Berlin is determined to expand the visibility and profitability of the women’s game by utilizing every available resource.

Ariane Hingst, one of the club’s co-founders and a two-time World Cup champion with Germany in 2003 and 2007, says, “You have more avenues to contact people, from the old lady who reads the newspaper… to the new generation who don’t watch TV anymore and are solely on YouTube.

How viktoria berlin is changing german football
How viktoria berlin is changing german football

The strategy has captured the interest of fans. Hundreds of fans attend home games, a trend that peaked against Türkiyemspor with a crowd of over 1,700. Der Tagesspiegel reported a television audience of 180,000 for the match’s televised broadcast.

“It’s a wonderful combination. “There are people who are interested in football, as well as people who are interested in female empowerment and want to support it,” adds Hingst.

The game was the first to be televised on German television from the third level, and they have no plans to stop there. Hingst believes that their success would encourage other clubs in Berlin and other places to focus more on the women’s game.

Viktoria berlin.
How viktoria berlin is changing german football

“We don’t say ‘It’s about Viktoria,’ we say ‘It’s about women’s football,’ so we include other clubs,” she explains. “I am a competitive person. Greater competition results in superior outcomes. When it comes to sports, we are rivals, but in the grand scheme of things, we want to build something together.

Angel City FC, the NWSL team owned by the actress Natalie Portman and with a star-studded investor list, is the evident inspiration for this new initiative. There are, however, features of the American model that cannot be transferred to German football, which has its ownership and investment regulations. The primary distinction is that the club cannot begin in the Bundesliga.

Hingst states, “We didn’t want to begin in the lowest level and take 20 years to reach the top.” “Viktoria possessed a competent women’s squad and a semblance of a good structure, but lacked the resources and personnel to adequately support it.”

Even though a great deal of progress has been made in the past six months, she desires to see a dramatic change in women’s football in Germany.

“Our first step is to professionalize the first league. With our players, they receive compensation. They are experiencing this for the first time in their life. On the one hand, we want to construct something incrementally, but on the other side, we have numerous structural issues.

We lack our training facilities and locker rooms. Last year, they did not know where they would train because there were two or three possible locations.

The former defender, who also serves as an assistant coach for Germany’s under-19 and under-20 teams, attributes the greater visibility to the 2022 European Championships. Germany reached the championship game, where they were defeated by England 2-1.

“We desired to launch a few months earlier, but it needed time for all contracts to be signed. It became insane, and the German team’s triumph encouraged us tremendously,” she recalls. Next year’s Women’s World Cup in Australia and New Zealand has even bigger expectations.

“Next year, I believe it will be bigger. Previously, we experienced occasional peaks, but they were not continuous. Therefore, it is essential to sustain momentum to continue telling these stories.”

Hingst, a former German international who was born in Berlin, believes teams in the city should be more supportive of women’s soccer. Hingst states, “I’ve never been able to perform on the largest possible platform at home.”

“It’s terrible history for a city that claims to be the sports capital, but just for the men’s teams. It was time to make a shift.”

Since August, when Viktoria played its first game under new management, the statistics have been excellent. They are in first place in their league with 11 victories in 12 matches, having scored 81 goals while conceding only eight. Run almost like a company, success on the pitch is essential, but brand building is also a priority.

The six co-founders also sought to empower other women through football, such as by paying players a fixed salary and launching campaigns to educate sponsors about the gender pay gap. Thus far, it has paid off.

According to Hingst, “our tale began like a rocket and is moving at full speed.” “I represent the sports side, followed by a marketing expert, a finance expert, a media expert, and two business experts.

Thus, the fact that we assembled a group in which each member excelled in a certain area is already extremely intriguing.

Hingst believes that more than 80 percent of the existing 87 investors are women from diverse professions, including politics, economics, and entertainment. She believes that her athletic background can assist players in navigating the game.

“In Germany, even if we finish first in our league, we must play two more matches to get to the second division. Due to the size of the stage, I intend to speak with players beforehand, based on my prior knowledge. Rather as a mentorship, if they desire to hear about my experience. I’d be delighted to share.”

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