Women’s WC – Brazil and Norway Start off with Wins


By Kara McDermott

The first round of group play in the Women’s World Cup finished up today with Brazil beating Australia 1-0 with a goal in the 54th minute from Rosana, and Norway eventually overcoming noted underdogs Equatorial Guinea on a late goal from Emilie Haavi in the 84th minute.

Early winners include Germany and France from Group A, Japan from Group B, the United States and Sweden from Group C, and Brazil and Norway from Group D.

There was only one tie, between England and Mexico in Group B. Germany and the U.S. put in some of the strongest showings so far.

The largest goal differential belongs to the storied American side, which was the only country to overcome an opponent by more than one goal with their 2-0 victory over Korea DPR on Tuesday.

Brazil in 2007 had the greatest goal differential at this point in the tournament, crushing New Zealand 5-0. In the Men’s World Cup of 2010, the largest goal differential after the first round of group play belonged to Germany with their 4-0 win over Australia.

Of the 14 goals scored so far in the tournament, eight have come in the second half and three have come in the last 15 minutes of play. Japan is yet the only team to eventually win after New Zealand answered Nagasato’s 6th minute goal with an equalizer from Hearn in the 12th minute. Japan’s Miyama scored the winning goal in the 68th minute.

Japan joins Germany and the United States as the only teams to score two goals so far. Both of Germany’s goals came in the first half (Garefrekes 10’, Okoyino Da Mbabi 42’); the US scored both of their goals in the second half (Cheney 54’, Buehler 76’).

Group play continues tomorrow, June 30 with Group A match-ups Canada vs. France and Germany vs. Nigeria. Japan will look to solidify their standing in Group B against Mexico on Friday, July 1.

The US plays again on Saturday, July 2 against Colombia. This is the first time Colombia has qualified for the tournament and is considered a major underdog but their incredibly youthful squad should challenge the American’s fitness.

Brazil’s match against Norway on Sunday, July 3 should be a good battle as both are in a dead heat for top honors in Group D.

Kara McDermott’s also writes for her blog, Waving the Rave.


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