Ticket sales for the FIFA Women's World Cup in Australia and New Zealand are continuing to shatter expectations as nearly 1.6 million have been sold for this year's 64-game tournament as of Thursday night.
In a news release, FIFA said its revised total target of 1.5 million tickets sold was surpassed on Monday after an extremely successful first six days. The tournament saw immediate success in its opening games on July 20 as crowds broke attendance records for New Zealand's upset win over Norway at Eden Park in Auckland (42,137) and Australia's win over Ireland at Stadium Australia in Sydney (75,784).
The crowd at Eden Park marked an all-time high for a men's or women's soccer match in New Zealand while the attendance record set in Sydney was the largest crowd for a Women's World Cup match in 24 years.
FIFA reported a combined 547,713 fans attended the first 21 matches across the two countries.
The previous record was set in 2015 when approximately 1.35 million attended the 52-game tournament in Canada – which was slightly smaller than this year's expanded edition of Women's World Cup.
After soaring past the 1.5 million mark on Monday, FIFA President Gianni Infantino said he was "a happy man" and he considered the tournament "a great success" thus far.
"Great games, great goals, and some underdogs who create some surprises or give the favorites a tough time. I mean, all the ingredients are there already from the start," Infantino said.
Fan festivals in host cities across New Zealand and Australia are also proving successful as nearly 150,000 people attended them during the tournament's first week.
FIFA also shared that TV ratings are hitting record highs despite time zone differences in major markets.
In the United States, an average audience of 6.26 million viewers across all channels watched the reigning World Cup champs' 3-0 win over Vietnam.
In France, an average audience of 3.43 million tuned in for the country's 0-0 draw with Jamaica last Sunday, which is higher than all other Women's World Cup matches broadcast live in the country over the past 12 years except for the 4.12 million that watched France's quarterfinal against Germany in 2015.
A record was also set in Colombia on Monday as more than 9 million people watched the country win its opening match against South Korea 2-0.
Infantino acknowledged the tournament's worldwide broadcast success, adding that it is available to watch in 200 territories through 130 broadcasters.
"We have incredible viewing figures across the world which will definitely reach two billion viewers," he said. "It’s fantastic."
The Women's World Cup remains in the group stage through Thursday, Aug. 3. The Round of 16 will begin two days later on Aug. 5.