Nine months after a major football tournament, the babies of victory

Sports are good for children. But also for doing… Nine months after a major sporting competition, we actually observe a spike in births among spectators. This is the conclusion of a study published in the newspaper PeerJ in February. We could therefore expect a baby boom between March and April 2025, exactly nine months after the Euro 2024 football championship.

But not everyone is affected in the same way: Gwinyai Masukume and his colleagues at University College Dublin, Ireland, showed that this was only true in countries whose teams shone – “the sex of victory”, as defined New Scientist and the host country of the competition. Supporters of losing teams don’t have babies after the match. There is even a decline in the birth rate compared to the average for the year.

“The data comes from major American football, soccer and rugby tournaments in Africa, Asia, Europe and North America”specifies the British weekly. The researchers in fact looked for demographic data on births according to geographical areas nine months after the 2009 Champions League, Euro 2016, the 2010 Football World Cup and the 2019 Rugby World Cup.

In their article, the researchers explain the increase in the birth rate by the occurrence of “intense emotions during these events, which would likely trigger hormonal changes, leading to an increase in sexual activity”.

New Scientist recalls that this field of research is little explored because, generally speaking “Few researchers are interested in the topic of party sex”.

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