The Bat Girls won the first official women’s blind football world championship amid an ongoing fight for Paralympic status

The growing attention towards women’s football worldwide has inspired many women to play. Representing their country is a source of pride and a significant achievement. However, there are still gaps in the process. At the Paralympic Games in Paris this year, only men will take to the pitch, fighting for a medal in five-a-side blind football.

Men’s blind five-a-side football made its Paralympic debut in 2004 but the women are still waiting to make their entrance. There is some hope, however, that this will change for the 2028 Games in Los Angeles. The International Blind Sports Federation (IBSA) is awaiting a decision by the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) on the presence of women’s blind football in the programme. “Having women’s football as a Paralympic sport means that it will be supported by sponsors all over the world”, says Elias Mastoras, IBSA’s blind football chairperson. “I hope the IPC will be open-minded because women’s blind football is developing all over the world.”

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