It becomes the first major official partner of Arsenal Women Football Club, the reigning Women’s Super League (WSL) champions. The team have won the league a record 12 times out of a potential total of 17 contests.
Lyon on Saturday won the UEFA Women’s Champions League for the fourth year in a row and the club has also won the French league title for the past 13 seasons.
Mastercard has also signed a series of women’s footballers as brand ambassadors, including Lyon’s Ada Hegerberg, winner of the first-ever women’s Ballon d’Or last year.
Hegerberg is joined by Lyon team-mates Kadeisha Buchanan, Saki Kumagai and Wendie Renard as Mastercard brand ambassadors.
Other brand ambassadors announced by Mastercard include former Arsenal and England player and BT Sport Industry Awards co-host Alex Scott, VfL Wolfsburg and Denmark striker Pernille Harder, and Chicago Red Stars and Australia forward Sam Kerr. Scott becomes Mastercard’s lead female football ambassador.
Raja Rajamannar, Chief Marketing and Communications Officer for Mastercard, said: “By investing significantly in women’s football, as a professional and influential sport, we have an opportunity to directly impact the lives of athletes and help build sustainable programmes to which girls and women around the world can aspire.”
Mastercard’s portfolio of sports partnerships also includes agreements with Roland-Garros, Australian Open, UEFA Champions League, PGA Tour, Major League Baseball, Rugby World Cup, The Open, Copa América and League of Legends Esports.
Women’s football is now the leading participation sport among young women and is projected to continue to grow through the success of the club game and the emergence of “super talents” on the world stage.
For 25 years, Mastercard has been a major sponsor of women’s football. As the game becomes more professional and competitive, Mastercard believes it is an opportune moment to invest in clubs and players, as this is the most direct way of putting much needed resources into women’s sports. Designed to help to grow the clubs and players while raising visibility and appeal to a broader range of fans and enthusiasts, Mastercard’s latest investment recognises the women who play and supports the clubs they play for.