The U.S. women’s soccer team’s World Cup victory tour game against Portugal at Lincoln Financial Field next Thursday has officially broken the program’s ticket-sales record for a standalone friendly.
According to the U.S. Soccer Federation, more than 44,100 tickets have been sold. That tops the previous record of 44,028 set in Pittsburgh four years ago for the Americans’ first game after winning the 2015 World Cup.
“It’s amazing,” Delran native Carli Lloyd said of the record in a video message posted on Twitter. “Let’s keep pushing ... Let’s try to fill this thing - let’s get 50, 60,000.”
Not all of the 23 players who won the World Cup this summer will play here. Megan Rapinoe, Kelley O’Hara, Rose Lavelle and Mallory Pugh have been dealing with injuries since getting home from France, and Alex Morgan suffered a neck injury playing for the NWSL’s Orlando Pride on Wednesday. Those of them who can make the trip likely will.
The nine U.S. women’s games on home soil that have drawn larger crowds were part of tournaments or doubleheaders. Six were in the 1999 World Cup, two were in the 1996 Olympics, and one was in a doubleheader with the U.S. men in 1998.
How long the new record will stand is an open question. The U.S. women will play two more games this year in NFL stadiums: in Charlotte, N.C., on Oct. 3 and in Chicago on Oct. 6. South Korea will be the opponent both times, and the latter game will be head coach Jill Ellis’ last in charge before stepping down.
Also on the schedule is another game vs. Portugal on Sept. 3 in St. Paul, Minn., at the 19,400-seat home of MLS’ Minnesota United.
The U.S. women haven’t played at the Eagles’ home since 2008. All six of their games in the area since then have been at Talen Energy Stadium.
On Wednesday, the U.S. women will hold an open practice at the Linc starting at 5 p.m. Admission is free, though parking is not.
1. 90,185: July 10, 1999, World Cup final vs. China at the Rose Bowl, Pasadena. Calif.
2. 78,972: June 19, 1999, World Cup group-stage opening game vs. Denmark at Giants Stadium, East Rutherford, N.J.
3. 76,489: Aug. 1, 1996, Olympics gold-medal game vs. China at Sanford Stadium, Athens, Ga.
4. 73,123: July 4, 1999, World Cup semifinal vs. Brazil at Stanford Stadium, Stanford, Calif.
5. 65,080: June 24, 1999, World Cup group-stage game vs. Nigeria at Soldier Field, Chicago
6. 64,196: July 28, 1996, Olympics semifinal vs. Norway at Sanford Stadium, Athens, Ga.
7. 54,642: July 1, 1999, World Cup quarterfinal vs. Germany at FedEx Field, Landover, Md.
8. 50,484: June 27, 1999, World Cup group-stage game vs. North Korea at Foxboro Stadium, Foxborough, Mass.
9. 46,037: May 30, 1998, friendly vs. New Zealand at RFK Stadium, Washington, D.C. (doubleheader with U.S. men’s team friendly vs. Scotland)