AUSTIN, Texas — Sunday is the FIFA Women's World Cup final and all tournament long, fans have piled into local bars and restaurants to watch some of the big games.
Don't believe that people watch soccer in Austin? Last summer during the Men's FIFA World Cup, Austin finished fourth highest overall among metered markets, with only Washington, D.C., San Francisco and Miami ranked higher, according to Jenn Inglesino, media relations coordinator for Fox Sports.
This year for the Women's World Cup, it's looking to be just as popular in Austin, with fans leaving their mark in Austin's local bars and restaurants.
At Easy Tiger in Central Austin, sports may not be the first thing that comes to mind. But the popular bake shop and beer garden has been setting up TVs for the Women's World Cup matches, filling their outdoor patio.
"We've never considered ourselves a sports bar by any means," said Joe Carr, the general manager of Easy Tiger's Linc location. "We’re happy to cater that to them."
He said, last summer, they showed the Men's FIFA World Cup at their Sixth Street location and it was a hit. So they wanted to do the same for the Women's World Cup at their location in Central Austin.
Scenes like the picture above have been reoccurring throughout the tournament. The result? They said their sales on World Cup game days triple every hour the game is being shown.
"In Austin, you have slower months usually in the summer, so this has been a huge boost for I'm sure a lot of businesses," said Carr. "We're thrilled at the outcome so far, the turnout."
But this isn't the only local spot that has seen a huge impact on its business because of the big tournaments. Haymaker in Central Austin has been a fan favorite for Austin soccer fans for the past few years.
"Haymaker has really established itself as the go-to soccer bar," said Roger De Luna, the general manager for Haymaker. "If we weren't kind of in the midst of this Women's World Cup tournament, I think we would be pretty slow ... It's obviously increased volume of business."
The picture above shows just one of the crowds that pile into the neighborhood bar. Sunday's final is expected to bring even more.
"We normally don't have door staff, but we definitely bring them on for an event like this," said De Luna. "We've got people here that love soccer that love the sport."
Here's a list of where you can watch the FIFA Women's World Cup Final on Sunday morning at 10 a.m.:
- Easy Tiger – 9 a.m. to noon. Austin Anthem will be hosting a watch party.
- Haymaker – Opening at 8:30 a.m.
- Lavaca Street Bar
- Punch Bowl Social at the Domain – Opening at 9 a.m.
- Native Hostel on Fourth Street – viewing parties here benefit the organization Upper Ninety.
- Friends and Allies Brewing Company in East Austin – opening at 9:45 a.m.
- Fresa's in South Austin – opening at 8 a.m.
- Cover 3
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