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Women flocked to the Net in June to escape football on TV, according to the latest research from new media pollsters, NetValue.

As men settled down in front of their TVs to watch Euro2000, women hopped online to escape the quadrennial soccer tournament.

According to NetValue, almost 44 per cent of Net users in Britain during June were women - an increase of six per cent on the previous month.

The researchers claim this pattern was replicated throughout Europe.

"One conclusion that can perhaps be drawn is that, whilst Europe's top strikers were finding the net on the pitch, European women were surfing the Net off it," said the report.

"This trend in the rapid growth of women online in June occurred across Europe, and suggests that as men were watching football, more women were going online."

Now, this may raise a smile from some men out there who remember, with some fondness, being left in peace to watch the footie while their partners "did something else" around the house.

Indeed, they may even feel smug about how they managed to watch all the Euro2000 matches without so much as a peep of interruption.

Think again boys. NetValue claims that 2.8 million women visited e-commerce sites in June - an increase of 400,000 on the previous month.

Checked you credit card bill lately? ®

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