Author Topic: What to expect for Women's Olympic Football tournament  (Read 2117 times)

Offline David

  • Global Moderator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 4229
    • View Profile
What to expect for Women's Olympic Football tournament
« on: August 03, 2008, 09:46:38 PM »
(BEIJING, August 3) -- Unlike the Men's Olympic Football tournament, which has an under-23 age ceiling, the Women's tournament features the world's top senior national teams competing for glory as coveted as the women's World Cup.

Altogether 12 teams will be fighting in Beijing for the ultimate honor. Among them, many have the potential to return home as the champion.

Germany

Currently ranked World No.1 by FIFA, the Germans seem to have won everything there is to win except an Olympic gold medal. As the reigning champion in Europe (winner of UEFA Women's Championships in 1995, 1997, 2001 and 2005), the team successfully defended their world title last September in China in the 2007 FIFA World Cup without conceding even one goal. Their standout players, which include defender Ariane Hingst, playmaker Renate Lingor and striker Birgit Prinz, are often described as the "golden generation" of German Women's Football.

However, their Olympic record is not as satisfying. After being eliminated in the round robin stage in Atlanta 1996 when Women's Football was first included on the Olympic roster, the team settled twice with bronze in Sydney and Athens.

If Germany wants to get to the top of the podium this August, they will have to edge through the "group of death" first, where they are clustered with Brazil, Nigeria and the Democratic Republic of Korea.

Brazil

Like their men, the Brazilian women have never grabbed an Olympic gold medal. However, with their current star-studded line-up, few will question their capacity to breakthrough this summer in Beijing.

Marta Vieira da Silva, the team's key striker, was FIFA World Player of the Year both in 2006 and 2007. She was also the Golden Ball and Golden Shoe winner of the FIFA Women's World Cup 2007, where Brazil finished as runner-up to defending champion Germany. Her strike partner Cristiane Rozeira de Souza Silva was voted the third-best player of the 2007 World Cup, and stood in third place in the selection of 2007 FIFA World Player of the Year. Four years ago, she was the top scorer in Athens with five goals.

Brazil's 2008 squad is lined up essentially with the same players that reached the 2007 World Cup final, with the exception of captain Aline Pellegrino, who was injured in a friendly with the Republic of Korea this June.

United States

Compared with Germany and Brazil, USA's Olympic record is much more distinguished. They won a gold medal each in Athens and Atlanta, and finished as runner-up in Sydney.

As for their World Cup performances, after clinching the crown twice in 1991 and 1999, Team USA settled for bronze medals in the last two World Cups (2003, 2007), falling behind Germany, Brazil and Sweden.

Most of the players on the team's 2008 squad participated in the 2007 World Cup. Though the team will have to compete without key striker Abby Wambach, who broke her leg in the team's final pre-Beijing friendly with Brazil, they still have the likes of Shannon Boxx and Natasha Kai to count on.

The United States is grouped with Norway, Japan and New Zealand this summer.

Norway

Norway has always been a strong force in Women's Football. The team has a record of one Olympic gold medal in Sydney, one bronze medal in Atlanta and one World Cup championship title in 1995, claimed on Swedish soil. They have also won the UEFA Women's Championship twice, in 1987 and 1993.

Now the Norwegians are faced with the issue of blending a new generation with experienced talents. The retirement of some key players including Ragnhild Gulbrandsen, Lise Klaveness, Camilla Huse and keeper Bente Nordby after China 2007 created uncertainty for the team's Olympic pursuit.

More contenders

Other medal potentials include Nigeria, the reigning champion in Africa, China, who has represented Asia in every Olympic finals since 1996, and the Democratic People's Republic of Korea, who remains a dominant force in Asia after dethroning China in the 2001 AFC Women's Championship.

The round robin stage of the Beijing 2008 Women's Football tournament is scheduled to kick off on August 6 at 5:00 p.m. local time (UTC/GMT +8) with the clash between Germany and Brazil as one of the three open matches.

Below is the final tournament draw:

Group E: China, Sweden, Argentina, Canada

Group F: Democratic People's Republic of Korea, Nigeria, Germany, Brazil

Group G: Norway, USA, Japan, New Zealand

http://en.beijing2008.cn/news/sports/headlines/football/n214500646.shtml

Offline OOH Fayefan

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2316
    • View Profile
Re: What to expect for Women's Olympic Football tournament
« Reply #1 on: August 07, 2008, 09:32:50 AM »
Germany - from what I saw of them....strong and rugged at the back, lightweight in midfield..lively upfront....

Brazil   -  quick, technically good....lacked finishing..Marta, passed her best....

Japan  -  fought back well...didnt win many balls in the air......good finishing apart from that 1 striker who missed a hatfull

Kiwis  - took 2 goals well...dodgy at the back

USA   - stayed at home, missed Wambach

Norway  - could go all the way.....
« Last Edit: August 08, 2008, 09:42:10 AM by OOH Fayefan »
League Champions and FA Cup Double Winners 2007 - 2008
League Champions, League Cup and FA Cup Treble Winners 2008 - 2009
League Champions 2009 - 2010

Offline twmcat

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 3453
    • View Profile
Re: What to expect for Women's Olympic Football tournament
« Reply #2 on: August 07, 2008, 11:30:03 PM »
And watch out for Sweden ;)
The pic is Tytti Porkka of Finland - I actually took it myself, but have lost all my pics and have no more :(

Offline twmcat

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 3453
    • View Profile
Re: What to expect for Women's Olympic Football tournament
« Reply #3 on: August 08, 2008, 12:18:09 AM »
I'm a bit behind here - only just realised some games have already been played.

Norway produced an opening 2-0 upset win over defending champions the United States while Germany and Brazil fought out a scoreless draw as women's football launched the Beijing Olympics.

It was only the second time the United States has lost an Olympic match after winning gold in Atlanta and Athens and losing the 2000 final in Sydney - again to Norway which is now in the box seat to top the group.

Japan and New Zealand opened their tournament with a 2-2 draw.

At Shenyang in the north-east of the country, Germany and Brazil cancelled each other out in a scoreless draw, while North Korea beat Nigeria 1-0.

China and Canada were the winners in Tianjin, north of Beijing, with the hosts defeating Sweden 2-1 - the same margin as Canada's victory over Argentina.

http://www.radioaustralia.net.au/news/stories/200808/s2327139.htm?tab=sport

Looks like I should have kept quiet about Sweden :(
The pic is Tytti Porkka of Finland - I actually took it myself, but have lost all my pics and have no more :(

Offline smithy

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 149
    • View Profile
Re: What to expect for Women's Olympic Football tournament
« Reply #4 on: August 08, 2008, 05:46:23 PM »
Twm's curse strikes again ;)

Offline TempeBrennan

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Posts: 71
    • View Profile
Re: What to expect for Women's Olympic Football tournament
« Reply #5 on: August 08, 2008, 07:14:04 PM »
Although there were quite suprising results (Norway, China, New Zealand), I don't believe we'll see a surprise winner at the end. USA are - of course - still able to make it through. I remember last year's World Cup: they lost against Brazil, had the goalkeeper conflict - but had no problem with Norway a few days later. They are definitely able to come back.

Germany is always one of the favorites, and against Brazil the defending was okay again (very weak in the friendly against Norway). But there has to come more out of the midfield; that was not only a problem against Brazil - it has been a problem for a couple of months now.

The first matches showed that women's football is not so predictable anymore - but I think it's too early to see an "underdog" come through.
« Last Edit: August 08, 2008, 07:18:48 PM by TempeBrennan »

shlj

  • Guest
Re: What to expect for Women's Olympic Football tournament
« Reply #6 on: August 09, 2008, 04:00:46 PM »
This tournament seems very open. Beside Norway that qualified already everybody has mathematically still a chance to qualify with that weird concept of qualifying the top two teams of each group plus the best two 3rd place.
22 goals in 12 games not the best return.
This includes 8 games won by a only a goal difference.
The gap between teams is closing maybe?

Offline Bonnie Lass

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 966
    • View Profile
    • Kopparbergs/Göteborg FC
Re: What to expect for Women's Olympic Football tournament
« Reply #7 on: August 11, 2008, 01:25:50 AM »
Twm's curse strikes again ;)

So long as Twm doesn't start rooting for Norway, I think we'll be OK. :D
If the only prayer you say in your whole life is thank you, that would suffice.