Wrigley Field hosts historic match between Chicago Red Stars and Bay FC

Women's soccer makes history at Wrigley Field with record attendance
Daniel Bartel-USA TODAY Sports

Last Saturday, Wrigley Field hosted an event that made history in women's soccer. The match between Chicago Red Stars and Bay FC not only broke the NWSL attendance record, drawing 35,038 fans, but also brought a new energy to both teams, which had been on losing streaks.

The atmosphere at Wrigley Field was electric. This was not just another NWSL game; it was a historic event, marking the first time a professional women's soccer match was held in an MLB stadium. The crowd's energy was palpable, and despite the rain, Chicago fans showed unwavering support for the Red Stars.

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For the Chicago Red Stars, playing at the iconic Wrigley Field was a moment of pride and hope. Club president Karen Leetzow expressed her gratitude to the fans and the city of Chicago for making this event a success. "Chicago truly showed the country what is possible when we level the playing field with a centrally located and easily accessible stadium and give these world-class athletes the support they deserve," said Leetzow.

On the field, Bay FC defeated the Chicago Red Stars 2-1 in a memorable night, handing the Red Stars their third consecutive NWSL loss. The impact of this event goes beyond the result on the field. Breaking the previous attendance record of 34,130 fans at a Seattle Reign match in 2023 demonstrates the growing interest and support for women's soccer. The success of this event also highlights the NWSL's ability to attract large crowds and create exciting experiences for women's soccer fans.

Julia Bianchi, one of the Red Stars players, emphasized the importance of this game for the franchise and the future of women's soccer: "This historic game is not only important for the franchise but also for the NWSL and the future of professional women's soccer. Chicago has once again proven that fans are eager to follow the intense competitive level that exists on the field every week in the league and around the world," stated the Brazilian.

The match between Chicago Red Stars and Bay FC at Wrigley Field was a historic milestone for the NWSL and women's soccer. With a record attendance of 35,038 fans, the event showcased the sport's potential to attract large audiences. In a recent example, the Women's Champions League final saw San Mamés in Bilbao, Spain, completely packed. Women's soccer has grown, and it's crucial to continue fostering this growth to fill more stadiums in the United States. The Red Stars reported surpassing 17,000 ticket sales in the first week of public sales for the match.

That moment was good for the team. The last time the Red Stars played in Chicago was in 2022, when they hosted the San Diego Wave in front of 23,951 fans. After this reunion at home, the team is struggling to regain its rhythm, and Saturday night, June 8, will be remembered as a turning point for women's soccer in the United States.