- World Cup teams make strong start to UEFA Women’s EURO qualification
- Vietnam and South Africa clinch titles
- Lucy Bronze crowned Europe’s best player for the 2018/19 season
Several weeks have passed since the USA deservedly became the new (and old) world champions at the FIFA Women’s World Cup France 2019™. Now women’s football is back in full swing around the world in leagues, tournaments and international qualifiers. FIFA.com rounds up some recent highlights.
UEFA Women’s EURO 2021 qualifying underway – Kosovo make triumphant debut
World Cup teams Italy, Netherlands, Scotland, Norway and Germany notched up 34 goals between them in the first matchday of qualifiers for the UEFA Women’s EURO 2021. Ten of these were provided by Germany alone, as they recorded a resounding win over Montenegro. In front of a crowd of 6,275 fans, Svenja Huth, Sara Doorsoun, Turid Knaak, Lea Schuller and Linda Dallmann all got their names on the scoresheet, while Klara Buhl netted her first two international goals and Alexandra Popp scored a hat-trick.
Kim Little delivered a standout performance in Scotland’s 8-0 triumph over Cyprus, finding the target five times during the match.
Other results for World Cup teams: Israel 2-3 Italy, Estonia 0-7 Netherlands, Northern Ireland 0-6 Norway
France, Sweden and Spain have not yet started their qualifying campaigns, while England qualify automatically as hosts.
Accolade for Lucy Bronze
Lucy Bronze was named UEFA Women’s Player of the Year 2018/19. The world-class Lyon and England defender made a vital contribution for her club last season as they won the UEFA Women’s Champions League and helped steer her homeland to the semi-finals of the Women’s World Cup. Her Lyon team-mate Ada Hegerberg finished second in the poll, followed by France international Amandine Henry.
Ecstasy for Banyana Banyana
South Africa won the COSAFA Women’s Championship once again at the 2019 tournament, but were made to work hard for their sixth title in the final against Zambia. A single goal from Tiisetso Makhubela was all that separated the teams at the Wolfson Stadium in Nelson Mandela Bay.
Banyana Banyana had the better chances and were rewarded when Makhubela ruthlessly capitalised on an error from the Zambia goalkeeper. Finishing as runners-up marked the best-ever performance from the Zambians, who collected the bronze medal on the three previous occasions and denied the FIFA Women’s World Cup 2019 side a goal until midway through the second half.
Zimbabwe secured third place with a 3-0 win over Botswana.