Brazil in box seat for 2027 Fifa Women’s World Cup

(Robert Cianflone/Getty Images)
(Robert Cianflone/Getty Images)

Brazil is the favourite to stage the 2027 Women’s World Cup after Fifa’s evaluation report scored its bid more highly than its European rival from Belgium, Netherlands and Germany.

Both bids were cleared by Fifa’s official Evaluation Bid Report to go forward to a vote of Fifa’s 211 members at the governing body’s Annual Congress in Bangkok on May 17. But Brazil’s bid scored 4.0 out of five, compared to 3.7 for the European application.

The hosting race is now a straight decision between Brazil and Europe after the United States and Mexican federations withdrew their joint bid last month.

Brazil is widely seen as the preferred bid by Fifa’s leadership after South America conceded ground by agreeing to stage three matches alongside Spain, Portugal and Morocco at the 2030 men’s World Cup, and allowing Saudi Arabia a free path in the bidding process to stage the 2034 men’s World Cup.

Fifa’s report says that Brazil’s bid offers a “strong financial proposition”, while the offer from Belgium, Netherlands and Germany (BNG) was a “solid financial proposition”.

Although no figures were given, the report says BNG’s commercial revenues would be expected to be “slightly ahead” of Brazil. Crucially, though, the report raises only one red flag, placing a “high risk assessment” against BNG’s proposed legal contractual framework.

On BNG’s bid, the report says: “A number of material changes were made to the hosting documentation, which would result in a more complex legal framework as the point of departure for planning the tournament if the bid were successful.”

More specifically, it says “areas in which the level of commitment required by Fifa has not been met include taxes, immigration procedures, labour law, and safety and security”.

“Fifa is exposed to potential unanticipated financial liabilities and operational delivery risks.”

In previous tournaments, Fifa has preferred hosting with countries whose governments have waived any tax obligations.

The European bid was analysed as having $10m (€9.3m) higher hosting costs than the “baseline figure” for previous Women’s World Cups, while Brazil’s is anticipated as having £50m lower costs.

Brazil’s larger stadiums promise greater ticketing sales – 2.1 million to BNG’s 1.7m – but lower ticketing revenue of $59m, compared to $65m.

The European bid is expected to have a larger European share of live TV audiences, with 59 per cent anticipated as being in Europe, compared with 15 per cent in Central/South America and 13 per cent in North America. The European audience share for a tournament in Brazil is predicted to be lower, at 43 per cent, with 31 per cent in Central/South America and 15 per cent in North America.