Women’s World Cup 2023 first look as USWNT chase three-peat

The 2022 Men’s World Cup in Qatar ended in a predictable fashion. Argentina won their first trophy since 1986 by beating France on penalties; Lionel Messi and Kylian Mbappe go toe-to-toe with their football. But we can take some time to reflect on the events of 2022, good and bad, and turn our attention to the next big thing, the 2023 Women’s World Cup.

In the year Everything is shaping up to be the most exciting tournament to date in Australia and New Zealand on July 20, 2023, with defending champions England threatening the United States Women’s National Team. In the year They filed a claim in France in 2019.

The 2023 Women’s World Cup kicks off with co-hosts New Zealand taking on Norway at Auckland’s Eden Park; Hosts Australia take on Republic of Ireland in Sydney on the same day. What are the key things to look out for in construction? And what will the competition prepare?

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February games

We cannot talk about the competition without knowing that there are still three vacancies, each of which will be determined by the international qualifiers in February.

The playoffs are held in New Zealand as a test for the World Cup, with 10 teams divided into three groups, two groups of three and one group of four based on their seeding. Each team plays as its own mini-tournament, with the winner of each team qualifying for the big showdown in July.

Group A is a semi-final between Cameroon and Thailand, the winner of which will play Portugal in the final. Group B hosts Senegal and Haiti, with Chile facing off in the finals. Finally, Group C will feature two semi-finals – Chinese Taipei vs Paraguay, Papua New Guinea vs Panama – with the winners punching their ticket to the World Cup in their final match.

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Hercule Gomez and Sebastian Salazar discuss the USWNT’s clash with England in October.

More groups than before

This will be the first Women’s World Cup to be held with 32 teams. In previous tournaments, 24 teams participated, and the best third-placed teams from the group advanced to the round of 16. In 2023, only the top two teams in each group will advance.

The expanded field means we will see a number of nations making their World Cup debuts, with Morocco, the Philippines, the Republic of Ireland, Vietnam and Zambia all participating for the first time and others still looking to compete. The event will also mark the first FIFA tournament — men’s or women’s — in which the Philippines has participated.

The 2019 Women’s World Cup was watched by more than 1 billion people worldwide, with the final between the USWNT and the Netherlands averaging 82.2 million viewers, the highest in 2019. And 365m behind the success of the 2022 Euros. In the women’s game in 2010, the record audience The time difference (eight to 11 hours before GMT) can affect viewership, making this event a major challenge for women’s football fans.

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The expansion to 32 teams is an important step for the development of the women’s game and will undoubtedly encourage further growth for smaller national teams in the years to come. However, from the 2019 World Cup, we can expect the parity of teams to decrease slightly. While the USA’s 13-0 win over Thailand in the opening group game featured few scorelines, the 2019 tournament saw a wide range of differences between the nations. That gap may widen again as new teams enter the fray, but that won’t last.

USWNT three-peat? Is he coming home or will he be stolen from the favorites?

In the year Despite a good run in 2022, it’s hard to argue that the U.S. aren’t still favorites heading into World Cup year. The four-time champions are looking to win the championship for the third time in a row and while their dominance on the world stage is tough, the 2023 edition should take down their biggest rivals.

For starters, the English Lions dominated the international competition last year. Since their historic victory at the Euros, lifting the trophy on home soil in front of a huge crowd, in October’s spectacular clash at Wembley, the team are unbeaten in 26 games since Sarina Wigman took over. They aim to bring the World Cup back to England.

“You can’t beat that — you can be tied on that. We want to win every game, but we talk about how we can improve the next game … Of course we want to break all the records, but breaking records doesn’t tell you what to do,” Wiegman added.

In an interview with ESPN in November, England and Barcelona defender Lucy Bronze, when asked about the importance of women’s soccer to the form of the USWNT, said that it had grown beyond “one team” and that the United States still had “wealth and experience.” They know how to win.”

“[The USWNT] They’re making a few changes at the moment and a lot of players who haven’t played against England or Spain are injured,” she said. “But the thing with the US is you can’t get rid of them. Countries like England and Germany have a mindset that they have developed over many years.

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While there has been a lot of talk about the Lions and the USWNT, Bronze noted that there are other countries competing for the title in 2023. “Canada.” [winning] Olympics, Australia like England and Netherlands home support in the last two Euros. So, there are many teams in the race, but [England] We only work on what we can do, what we can achieve.

“We won the Euros, we still have a lot of things to improve on. If we can do that, we have a good chance at the World Cup.”

LGBTQ+ rights can be highlighted.

The 2022 Men’s World Cup in Qatar has highlighted significant issues, from human rights abuses and the deaths of migrant workers to the suppression of LGBTQ+ rights. The row escalated after FIFA banned nations from wearing the One Love logo ahead of England’s opener against Iran — eight European nations have agreed to wear it against all forms of discrimination.

It’s no secret that women’s soccer is an open and inclusive environment with many openly gay players and a culture of mobility within the sport. Euro 2022 captains will wear rainbow armbands during the tournament to support the LGBTQ+ community. It remains to be seen what steps FIFA will take for the Women’s World Cup, but Australia and New Zealand have promised to be more welcoming.

The ACL Epidemic: Who Will Survive?

With more than six months to go before the opening game, we need to talk about those who could be fired. Anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injuries have been reported in women’s soccer, raising the question of why female players are more likely to suffer this injury than their male counterparts.

Some athletes are set for a potential World Cup return. Two-time Ballon d’Or winner Alexia Putelas is one of them. The Spain and Barcelona star midfielder suffered a serious injury when she tore her ACL in training shortly before the start of the Euros last summer. The good news for Spain fans is that Putelas should be fit for the World Cup in time, albeit with a much-needed recovery period. However, due to an ongoing dispute with the Spanish RFEF, Putelas is one of 15 Spain internationals who have asked not to be selected pending a commitment to a “professional project”. That means we could see her at the World Cup without that deal even if she makes a full recovery.

Another doubtful star for the big show was Lionesses star and Euro Golden Boot winner Beth Mead, who tore her ACL while playing for Arsenal at the end of November. The forward has undergone surgery and admitted she still had her sights set on receiving the BBC Sports of the Year award last week. “I will do my best to reach the World Cup,” she said at the awards. “It’s an injury where you have good days and bad days, but I’m working hard behind the scenes with Arsenal.”

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Joining her on the pitch is Mead’s Arsenal teammate, partner and star Netherlands striker Vivian Miedema, who tore her ACL in December and is awaiting surgery of her own. The injury sustained in the Gunners’ Champions League defeat to Lyon naturally makes her a World Cup outsider and the Netherlands will be in the 2018 World Cup. It will hurt their chances of repeating their 2019 World Cup success when they finish second in 2023.

Other ACL injuries that could affect the star power at the World Cup include Australian forward Kiah Simon and Republic of Ireland midfielder Jessica Zew. While there is hope that they can bounce back in time, there are no guarantees and their teams will be tough losses to overcome.

More stars

Each major tournament features a new batch of stars who continue to take the women’s game by storm. In the year In 2019, the USWNT’s Rose Lavelle captivated audiences with her talent, Australia’s Mary Fowler proved age is just a number, France’s Grace Giroux positioned herself for stardom and Canada’s Jessie Fleming played well beyond her years. Two years later, she would help her country win Olympic gold in Tokyo.

In the year It’s fair to say that a 2023 edition is set to follow. German midfielder Lena Oberdorf may be out at the Euros, but her announcement that she is the best in the world at the international level will be a spectacle no one wants to miss.

Another thing to watch out for is Maya Le Tissier, who was called up to the England squad during their November international break. At the age of 20, the Manchester United defender has proven to be one of the best players in the Women’s Super League, and her call-up is a testament to that. If you are selected for the Lions, expect to win the World Cup.

Swedish midfielder Hanna Bennison has been named one of the UEFA’s 10 best young players in 2020 and has been in full form at the Euros two years later. With another year of experience, she looks set to play a big role for her country in the World Cup.

American forward Alyssa Thompson, who will only be 18 at the start of the tournament, has the added benefit of playing at the national team level with young stars like Trinity Rodman and Sophia Smith ahead of her. However, the star power on her side cannot outshine this young talent. After making her debut with the Lions in October, Thompson has gone from strength to strength, and it wouldn’t be surprising to see her jump to another level come July.

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