Berlin (AFP) – German radio broadcaster ARD announced Friday that they will use female commentators for the first time to cover the men’s final matches of Euro 2020 and next year’s World Cup following remarks made by a retiring reporter who feared the trade’s ‘glass ceiling’ would never be shattered.
Last week, veteran radio commentator Sabine Topperwien, 60, sparked a reaction on her retirement by expressing doubt she would “live to see a World Cup final commentated by a woman”.
Now ARD has decided a woman will be behind the radio microphone for the final of this summer’s European championships, postponed from last year, and the 2022 World Cup in Qatar.
“These decisions are intended to underline ARD’s desire to continue to promote women in sports journalism,” the broadcaster said in a statement.
Julia Metzner, a sports reporter for sister station SWR, will commentate the final of the European championships, scheduled for London’s Wembley Stadium on July 11.
“Julia comments on the Bundesliga for eight million listeners on ARD’s radio stations and does a great job. She deserves this final,” said ARD manager Steffen Simon.
It has yet to be decided which female sports reporter will commentate the World Cup final in Doha on December 18 next year.
Topperwein is delighted that her remark sparked ARD’s decision.
“I am very happy for my successors that they are now getting two such opportunities,” she said.
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