Rugby league football fest at Wembley


Challenge Cup remains at Wembley Image: Coliseum GSVA

The Wembley Stadium in Wembley, London (UK) will stage another feast of Rugby League including the Betfred Women’s and Men’s Challenge Cup Finals on June 8th in 2024 – reverting to an earlier slot in a restructured calendar.

‘Wigan Warriors’ stated that the above event will also include the fifth AB Sundecks 1895 Cup Final and the inspiresport Champion Schools.

The 90,000-capacity Wembley Stadium is a football stadium in Wembley, London (UK). It opened in 2007 on the site of the original Wembley Stadium, which was demolished from 2002 to 2003. The stadium hosts major football matches including home matches of the England national football team and The Football Association (FA) Cup Final.

London (UK)-based The Football Association (FA) is the governing body of association football in England and the Crown Dependencies of Jersey, Guernsey and the Isle of Man. Formed in 1863, it is the oldest football association in the world and is responsible for overseeing all aspects of the amateur and professional game in its territory.

The Betfred Men’s and Women’s Challenge Cup is a rugby league knockout competition organized by the Rugby Football League. The competition started in 2012.

Manchester (UK)-based the Rugby Football League is the governing body for rugby league in England. Founded in 1895 as the Northern Rugby Football Union following 22 clubs resigning from the Rugby Football Union, it changed its name in 1922 to the Rugby Football League.

The Wigan Warriors are a professional rugby league club in Wigan, Greater Manchester, England (UK), which competes in the Super League. Formed in 1872 as the Wigan Football Club, Wigan was a founding member of the Northern Rugby Football Union following the schism from the Rugby Football Union in 1895. The 25,133-capacity DW Stadium in Wigan, England serves as their home ground.

The inspiresport Champion Schools tournament is the RFL’s flagship schools’ competition, with separate competitions for boys and girls from Year 7 to Year 11 inclusive. The tournament includes hundreds of schools across England, Wales and Scotland each year.

‘Wigan Warriors’ further stated that the final of Rugby League’s oldest knockout competition returned to Wembley this year after an outing at the 62,850-capacity Tottenham Hotspur Stadium in London, England in 2022. History was made as the Women’s Challenge Cup Final between Leeds Rhinos Women and St Helens Women was also played at the national stadium for the first time before the Men’s Final between Hull Kingston Rovers and Leigh Leopards.

And now a two-year deal has been concluded to confirm the 81st and 82nd Men’s Finals will be staged at the Wembley Stadium in 2024 and 2025 – as well as the second and third Women’s Finals.

Remarked Rhodri Jones, Managing Director of Rugby League Commercial, “We are pleased to be able to confirm that the Betfred Challenge Cup Finals Day will be played at the Wembley Stadium in each of the next two years and will be returning to an earlier position in the season in June. This fits with the Reimagining of the Rugby League through the sport’s long-term partnership with the International Management Group (IMG), as we work towards a restructured calendar, and also maintain the double header of the Men’s and Women’s Challenge Cup Finals given the growth potential of the Women’s and Girls’ game. This will be an historic weekend for the sport’s longest-established showpiece, as for the first time the athletes of Women’s Rugby League take their rightful place on the Wembley stage alongside the men – with both Finals given a national platform on BBC Sport.”

Added Jones, “With a fresh feel to the Men’s Final between two teams who have waited a long time since their single Wembley Challenge Cup wins in 1971 and 1980, and two new finalists in the AB Sundecks 1895 Cup, there is a real mood of positivity going into the weekend, as Rugby League plays its part in the centenary celebrations of the Wembley Stadium.”

Put in Paul Smyth, Head of Operations at Wembley Stadium, “We are delighted to host Rugby League’s Challenge Cup Finals Day here at the Wembley Stadium for another two years. The Challenge Cup Final day is always one of the great days in the calendar and we are proud to have hosted it here at the Wembley since 1929. We look forward to putting on more world-class finals over the next few years.”

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