UEFA's ground-breaking weekly vlog, Press Play, has now had over three million views on the Together #WePlayStrong Youtube channel.
The series provides a unique insight into the daily lives of four professional women's footballers and has already received critical acclaim and a growing audience.
Lisa Evans (Arsenal/Scotland), Eunice Beckmann (Basel), Sarah Zadrazil (Turbine Potsdam/Austria) and Laura Feiersinger (Sand/Austria) have won a new army of fans with the unprecedented access, while at the same time helping to transform the image of women’s football.
Adventures to the United States, FA Women's Super League Cup final celebrations, shopping sprees and a Spice Girls tribute in celebration of the band's reunion have all helped build Press Play's loyal weekly following.
Evans, part of the Arsenal team that won the FA WSL Cup this month, said: "It has been brilliant being able to give young girls an insight into what my life is like through Press Play, on a platform that is so accessible – which is exactly what football should be for girls everywhere. Football is a huge part of everything I do and I’ve enjoyed showing that aspect of my life, and introducing fans to the amazing women I play alongside."
Feiersinger added: "Press Play has been fantastic to be a part of, as it has given me the opportunity to share my other passions with fans, outwith being a professional player. From skiing to gaming, I’ve really enjoyed dispelling the myth that as a footballer, that’s all you can do, and showcasing these hobbies to thousands of viewers each week."
Zadrazil, Feiersinger's Austria room-mate, said: “It has been so exciting bringing the Press Play vlog series to girls across the world, and revealing exactly what goes into being a professional football player. I hope I have shown that whilst training and playing games are certainly a massive part of what we do, diet, fitness and enjoying your down time are also huge priorities for me and the other girls.”
Beckmann said: "Taking part in the Press Play vlog series is great because I’m doing it with three women who are not only my friends, but players I respect as athletes. It has been great to show the travelling aspect of being a football player, with Laura and Sarah rooming together with the Austrian national team, Lisa at pre-season training in La Manga and my amazing trip to the US where I got to meet other amazing women in sport."
This unique access is part of UEFA's ongoing strategy to grow participation of girls’ and women’s football and, ultimately, make it the No1 sport for in each of their 55 national associations by 2020. One key pillar of the strategy is to change the image of the game and through the Together #WePlayStrong campaign, UEFA aims to make football more culturally relevant and aspirational for girls in their teenage years, where drop-out can occur in large numbers.
Another key pillar of the strategy is increasing visibility of females playing football, and with an average of 300,000 views per episode, Press Play has been successful in showcasing the talent and personalities of the top players as well as the accessibility to the women's game.
UEFA head of marketing activities and sponsorship Peter Willems said: "Key to the Together #WePlayStrong campaign strategy is creating content in formats that girls want to consume and putting it on platforms they are already engaged with. Press Play is a terrific example of just that.
"In a world where YouTube vloggers are central influencers in young girls’ lives, we are proud to have added four inspiring female professional football players to that space.
"However, the praise really must go to the four players for creating such compelling content, and their clubs and national associations for supporting the series with access to many areas of their training routine and match preparation.
"We look forward to continually evolving the series, having been massively encouraged by the initial reaction and engagement levels."
For further information on Together #WePlayStrong head to www.weplaystrong.org.
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