The 2025 Rugby League World Cup will be staged in France – here’s everything you need to know about the tournament.
Jean Castex, the French Prime Minister, announced in Paris that France will host the 17th Rugby League World Cup.
Four different World Cups
For the first time ever, France will bring together four competitions – men, women, wheelchair and youth.
This follows on from the trio of World Cups that will be hosted together in England in 2022.
128 matches will be held across 40 venues for five weeks from early October to mid-November in 2025.
Host towns and cities
The tournament will take place in 40 cities across France. It will mainly take place in medium-sized cities, with France 2025 “being the World Cup of regions”.
Around 90% of matches will be played in mid-sized towns – so far 38 towns and cities have bid to host at France 2025.
Cities like Paris, Toulouse and Marseille are expected to host the bigger games, including the semi-finals and final.
The final selection of host cities and base camps will be announced in the second half of 2022.
Starting at the end of 2023, almost one million tickets will go on sale for the stadiums and arenas. The target sales are 822,000, of which 60% are aimed to be sold in France.
Additionally, 100,000 supporters from overseas are expected to follow France 2025.
The average price of a ticket will be less than £25; which enables all audiences to take part in the tournament.
It is hoped that the World Cup will help make France a new stronghold in the development strategy of rugby league worldwide.
Tickets will be available online from the end of 2023.
RLWC2025 tournament director Michel Wiener told the press conference he would be working on a budget of £49million.
The French Government provided just over £500,000 in funding to launch the campaign to host the tournament with more to come but organisers say 70 per cent of their income would come from private sources.
They aim to sell 822,000 tickets for the 128 matches across all four events – the men’s, women’s, wheelchair and youth competitions – including 343,000 for the men’s World Cup.
Impact on France
France 2025 will act as an accelerator for the economy, tourism and employment in the country.
Furthermore, more than 2,000 professional training opportunities will be created between 2023 and 2025.
The French already approve of this inclusive competition model: 88% look favourably upon this project and the values it embodies*.
Low carbon promise
Organisers have promised to deliver a low carbon, people’s tournament.
Although more than 100,000 fans are expected from overseas, organisers say they will work with airlines on reducing emissions and ban internal flights.
They say the focus will be on a renewable mobility platform which will include autogas coaches for teams’ transport and car sharing; bicycles and electric vehicles for the short distances between the host towns and base camps.
French Prime Minister delighted to host Rugby League World Cup
French Prime Minister Jean Castex said: “France is a land of major sporting events, which represent a tremendous asset for economic appeal and social cohesion in our regions.
“Hosting of the Rugby Union World Cup in 2023 and the Olympic and Paralympic Games in 2024 are spearheads of this policy, carried out jointly by the state and communities.
“The Rugby League World Cup, which will be organised in 2025 by France, is a great opportunity for the many regions and cities that wish to engage in this dynamic and I support it wholeheartedly.”
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