- FIFA Women's World Cup
Infobox sports league
current_season=2007 FIFA Women's World Cup
champion=fbw|GERThe FIFA Women's World Cup is recognized as the most important
Internationalcompetition in women's football and is played amongst women's national football teams of the member states of FIFA, the sport's global governing body. Contested every four years, the first Women's World Cup tournament, named the Women's World Championship, was held in 1991, sixty-one years after the men's first FIFA World Cuptournament in 1930. The current format has sixteen teams competing every four years for the winner's trophy.
The tournament was originally the brainchild of the then FIFA president
João Havelange. [cite web | title=Women's World Cup History|work=Sports Illustrated| url=http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/soccer/world/1999/womens_worldcup/history/index.html| accessdate=March 25 | accessyear=2007] The inaugural tournament was hosted in China in 1991, with twelve teams sent to represent their countries. The 1995 FIFA Women's World Cupwas held in Swedenwith twelve teams. Over 660,000 spectators attended the 1999 FIFA Women's World Cupin the United States, [cite web | title=FIFA Women's World Cup — USA 1999| work=FIFA.com| url=http://www.fifa.com/tournaments/archive/tournament=103/edition=4644/overview.html| accessdate=March 27| accessyear=2007] and nearly one billion viewers from seventy countries tuned in to watch sixteen countries fight for the title.Fact|date=March 2007
The United States and Germany have won the championship twice, and Norway once. Germany are the two-time defending champions,
In the 1999 edition, one of the most famous moments of the tournament was American defender
Brandi Chastain's victory celebration after scoring the Cup-winning penalty shot against China. She took off her jersey and waved it over her head (as men frequently do), showing her muscular torso and sports bra as she celebrated. The 1999 final in the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, Californiahad an attendance of 90,185, a world record for a women's sporting event. [cite web | title=Women's World Cup History|work=The Sports Network | url=http://www.sportsnetwork.com/default.asp?c=sportsnetwork&page=SOC-WWC/STAT/WWC-HISTORY.htm| accessdate=March 25 | accessyear=2007]
The 1999 and 2003 Women's World Cups were both held in the United States; in 2003 China was supposed to host it but the tournament was moved because of
SARS. [cite news | first=Naomi | last=Koppel | coauthors= | title=FIFA moves Women's World Cup from China because of SARS | date= 2003-05-03| publisher= | url =http://www.usatoday.com/sports/soccer/world/2003-05-03-womens-cup-sars_x.htm | work =USA Today | pages = | accessdate = 2007-03-27 | language = ] As compensation, China retained its automatic qualification to the 2003 tournament as host nation and was automatically chosen to host the 2007 FIFA Women's World Cup. Germanywill host the 2011 FIFA Women's World Cup, as decided by vote in October 2007.
At the 2007 World Cup in China, U.S. captain
Kristine Lillycompeted in her fifth World Cup, making her the only woman and one of three players in history to appear in five World Cups. [cite web | title=U.S. Women Still Have One Link to the Past|work=Washington Post | url=http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/09/06/AR2007090602641.html?hpid=sec-sports| accessdate=September 7 | accessyear=2007]
The participants qualify through the regional football confederations of Oceania (OFC), Europe (UEFA), North America, Central America and the Caribbean (CONCACAF), South America (CONMEBOL), Asia (AFC) and Africa (CAF).
The competition takes place over the course of three weeks. In the group stage, 16 teams seeded into four groups (A,B,C, and D) compete against each other in a round-robin tournament. After Germany trounced Argentina 11–0 in the opening game of the 2007 World Cup, FIFA president Sepp Blatter conceded that the one-sided match was "not good for the game" and was something that FIFA would consider in deciding whether or not to expand the group phase to 24 teams. [cite web | title=FIFA chief dismayed at 11–0 scoreline in women's World Cup opener|work=AFP | url=http://afp.google.com/article/ALeqM5g7eAH9L60nULKg1Jv5DESmx41cGQ| accessdate=September 11 | accessyear=2007]
knockout phase, the top two teams from each group advance to the quarterfinals, a single-elimination tournamentin which teams play each other in one-off matches, with extra timeand penalty shootouts used to decide the winner if necessary. The winner of Group A plays the runner-up of Group B, The winner of Group B plays the runner-up of Group A, etc.
The winners of the four quarterfinal games move on to the semifinal matches, which determine the contestants for the
championship game. The losing semifinalists compete to determine third place.
Since its conception in 1989, the Women's World Cup has continued to grow in popularity. FIFA estimates that there are currently forty million girls and women playing football around the world.Fact|date=March 2007 Planning for the 2007 Women's World Cup in China reflects the growth.Fact|date=March 2007
*"Did not play but was part of the squad".
FIFA Women's World Cup winning captains and managers
* [http://www.fifa.com/en/womens/index.html FIFA official site]
* [http://www.uefa.com/competitions/wowc/index.html UEFA's page on the FIFA Women's World Cup]
* [http://www.time.com/time/photogallery/0,29307,1666987,00.html Photos: FIFA Women's World Cup China 2007] on Time.com (a division of Time Magazine)
* [http://www.rsssf.com/tablesw/women-worldcup.html RSSSF's pages]
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