The 2019 Women’s World Cup kicked off last Friday with 24 teams in the race to be crowned “queens” of the game over the month-long tournament in France.
There are 24 teams classed into six groups. Africa’s representatives are Nigeria’s Super Falcons, Banyana Banyana of South Africa and the Indomitable Lionesses of Cameroon.
Two of Africa’s reps took to the field on Saturday recording loses by three goals each. South Africa were beaten three – one by Spain whiles Norway crushed Nigeria by three unanswered goals.
In this rolling coverage, Africanews keeps up to date with the major ongoings around the three African teams.
You can read about the following major areas by scrolling below:
- Rolling updates on African representatives
- Match report: South Africa vs. Spain
- Match report: Nigeria vs. Norway
Nigeria, are the reigning African champions and are hoping to better their record at the Women’s World Cup and go all the way to the July 7 final.
The nine-time African champions having fallen to Norway will now have to reset their tactics in upcoming fixtures against hosts France and Korea Republic.
South Africa, who are featuring at the Women’s World Cup for the first time, are the rising star of the continent.
The Banyana Banyana have the reigning African player of the year, Thembi Kgatlana, who was the top-scorer at th Nations Cup (AWCON 2018) last year. The runners-up at AWCON 2018, have to face two-time champions Germany and China after the Spain pain.
Cameroon secured their place at the World Cup by beating Mali in the third place play-off at AWCON 2018 which took place in Ghana earlier this year.
They are in Group E and are billed to slug it out with European champions Netherlands, Canada and New Zealand.
- 1991, year first tournament held
- 3 times, record champions USA have won
- $30m, prize money at 2019 tournament
- 24, number of teams at France 2019
- 3, number of African teams at tournament
- 9, stadiums and cities hosting matches
- 15, record goals scored at the World Cup (by Brazil’s Marta)
- France, hosts this year
- Quarter-finals, highest stage reached by African team (Nigeria)
Match Report: South Africa’s bright start cut short by rampant Spain
Jennifer Hermoso netted two second-half penalties and substitute Lucia Garcia added a last-minute goal as Spain came from behind to beat South Africa 3-1 at the women’s World Cup on Saturday.
Hermoso tucked away spot-kicks in the 69th and 82nd minutes to give Spain a winning start to their Group B campaign after South Africa, in their maiden appearance at the finals, took a surprise first-half lead.
The first penalty came after a handball by South Africa captain Janine van Wyk and the second after follow through tackle by full back Nothando Vilakazi on Garcia which earned Vilakazi a second yellow card and a dismissal.
South Africa were on for a shock win after Thembi Kgatlana struck a powerful shot from the corner of the penalty area over the head of Spain goalkeeper Sandra Panos in the 25th minute.
The goal came after the South Africans had weathered Spain’s early dominance with desperate defending and then began to look threatening on the counter-attack.
African Women’s Footballer of the Year Kgatlana could have made it 2-0 but fluffed a tap-in opportunity at the back post in the 57th minute, not long after Hermoso had come close to an equaliser by striking the crossbar.
But Spain’s superior fitness saw them dominate the last half hour and there were other chances for a more commanding scoreline.
Garcia’s goal came from a ball straight down the middle of the pitch as she outsprinted the defence.
Match Report: African champions, Nigeria, cut to size by Norway
Ada Hegerberg was not needed as Norway kicked off their women’s World Cup Group A campaign with a comprehensive 3-0 victory over Nigeria on Saturday.
Without Ballon d’Or winner Hegerberg, who quit international football in 2017 due to a dispute with her home federation, the 1995 champions relied on goals by Guro Reiten, Lisa-Marie Karlseng Utland and an own goal by Osinachi Phale to prevail.
The result put Norway in second place in Group A behind hosts France, who thrashed South Korea 4-0 on Friday in the opening game of the month-long tournament in Paris.
Reiten put Norway in front after 17 minutes when she volleyed home from a corner.
Utland doubled the tally with a powerful shot from close range after being set up by Reiten in the 34th.
Three minutes later, three-times African champions Nigeria were completely overwhelmed as Ohale deflected Isabell Herlovsen’s cross into her own goal.
Norway next face France in Nice on Wednesday while Nigeria take on South Korea in Grenoble the same day.