The Women's World Cup semi-final broke local broadcast records and became the most-watched television programme in Australia since 2001. AFP News/FRANCK FIFE

During this years' World Cup, the players have called upon the FA to better their wages and training conditions. Due to their larger platform, Australia, the US, Germany and the England Lionesses have spearheaded the movement.

Spain has also made a huge impact on the "equal rights for professional female footballers" movement, with players like Mapi Leon refusing the World Cup call-up.

Millie Bright, who has stepped in as England's Captain after Leah Williamson tore her ACL (Anterior Cruciate Ligament) in April, posted a statement on social media that read: "Last year we presented the FA with concerns relating to our bonuses and commercial structures. The hope was that the discussions would lead to a solution before the commencement of our World Cup. We are disappointed that a resolution has still not been achieved."

But, the huge audience of the 2023 World Cup, has changed the narrative for women in football.

Earlier this year, FIFA estimated that the 2023 World Cup will be viewed by more than two billion people, which would represent an increase of around 79 per cent on the previous tournament in 2019.

According to the Australian broadcaster Seven, the Women's World Cup semi-final between the Matildas and the Lionesses in Sydney has broken local broadcast records to become the most-watched television programme in Australia since 2001.

An estimated 11.15 million viewers in Australia alone, tuned in to watch England close the game with a winning score of 3-1.

Sam Kerr, one of the world's best Strikers, calls for improved funding.

For the players who advanced out of the group games, FIFA increased their original salary of $30,000 to $60,000, which will be split amongst the 366 players in the 16 teams.

Although FIFA awards $13 million to the male teams that advance out of the group games, the increased salary is guaranteed to change the lives of professional female athletes.

Earlier this year, FIFA estimated that the 2023 World Cup would be viewed by more than two billion people, which would represent an increase of around 79 per cent from the previous tournament in 2019.

Lucy Bronze, who plays as a Defender for England and Barcelona, spoke of the unfair treatment of professional female footballers. Bronze said: "As a team, we've always been pushing in the background, it's only been recently that it's been made more public and people are more aware of it, but it's something we've always had to do as players."

Lucy Bronze is the first ever England player to win the UCWL final with two different clubs.

Although there has been a slight increase in pay, FIFA President Gianni Infantino announced prior to the World Cup, that each federation will be responsible for distributing the funds to the players.

After Nigeria lost their place in the quarterfinals, following a penalty shoot-out against England, the players were in a dispute against their federation concerning bonus payments, camp allowances and expenses – some of these dated back to 2021.

Although the teams compete in the tournament as football fans, Nigeria Forward Uchenna Kanu said: "If we get paid... Of course, it'll have a huge impact on our lives. We have families. We have things to take care of with money. That's important for us, as well."

In 2022, after winning the World Cup twice, the female players on the national United States team signed a contract with U.S. Soccer that guaranteed equal payments with their male national counterparts. It was agreed that all tournament prize money funds are split equally between the two national teams – with a percentage going to the federation.

The FA have also increased the total prize pool by more than three times the amount at the 2019 Women's World Cup in France which stood at $30 million. However, the prize fund is still far less than the $440 million that was awarded to Argentina after their win at the 2022 Men's World Cup in Qatar.

In the World Cup Final on Sunday 20 August at 10:00 GMT, the England Lionesses will take on Spain – who they beat 2-1 in the UEFA Euro 2022.