Category Archives: 2015 women’s world cup

Some Thoughts on the 2015 World Cup

Some thoughts, good and bad, on the 2015 Women’s World Cup.

The US Were the Best Team

I said at the beginning of the tournament that one the key differences between rooting for the men’s team and women’s team is that the latter are favorites. It’s a different mentality. And that’s what made the start for the US so disconcerting, they were favorites, but they weren’t playing like it. They won their group, and yes it was still a sure thing, but boy howdy it could’ve been more comfortable.

Then in the semifinal match against an the first opponent that was truly on their level, with the lineup down due starters due to yellow card accumulation, the team came alive. Yet, there was still some doubt even with a 2-0 win over the team ranked #1 according to FIFA (the US was #2).

All that doubt was removed after about five minutes of the final. The US were simply the best team in the tournament, and they were finally playing like it. It wasn’t quite Germany 7, Brazil 1, but that’s more of a credit to the Japanese not giving up more than anything else. This was a domination.

Carli Lloyd Hit an Absolute Golazo

Carli Lloyd’s audacious shot from midfield is, well, it speaks for itself.

— Timothy Burke (@bubbaprog) July 5, 2015

What a way to cap off a hat trick. As a side note, this kind of really needs a nickname.

The 2019 Women’s World Cup Will be in France

Perhaps the biggest influence of the artificial turf on play in this World Cup is with the passing. I lost count of the number of passes that didn’t seem to have the right weight or the right touch, balls that just rolled forever seemingly without any friction. Fortunately, this will never happen again. The 2016 Olympics will be in stadiums from 2014, and all the French venues will have grass. As for the teams, given the quality of the bottom of the field, I think 2023 is probably a better target for expansion to 32 teams than 2019.

Speaking of Brazil…

Unlike in the men’s game, the Olympics feature full women’s sides. The US, and all the other top teams, will feature the core of their current teams. We could well see the US, Japan, Germany, and France all back in the late stages of the tournament.

Hopefully it’ll be as fun as this one was. See you next summer!

The 2015 Women’s World Cup Starts Today

I haven’t talked about this nearly enough, so here’s a quick post to kick it off. (Er, no pun intended.)

Later today, the 2015 edition of the Women’s World Cup starts, with Canada and China starting at 6:00 Eastern on FS1.

“Why should I watch?”, you may find yourself asking. Well, here are my reasons:

  • It’s more soccer! International soccer is my favorite kind of soccer, and in the international game meaningful games of any sort are rare. 
  • U-S-A! U-S-A! Unlike on the men’s side, where the US is generally thought of as scrappy underdogs trying to prove themselves against the world’s European and South American elite, in the women’s game we are the elite. While rooting for the underdog is fun, this is your chance to root for a front-runner.
  • It’s on during the day! Yes, unlike the next two men’s World Cups, this one is taking place in US timezone-friendly Canada. (Well… probably.) Games will generally start in prime time during the week, at least if you’re on the East Coast.
  • This is not a “yes, but did you explain how the women’s superior fundamentals makes up for their inability to dunk?” situation. While the women’s game isn’t as deep as the men’s (in terms of the competition), there are still a lot of good players out there who can cross and hit the through-ball as well as anyone. I watched the last World Cup and the Olympics (where the women field full-strength sides, unlike the men) and enjoyed it thoroughly.
  • Besides, do I really need to give you any more reasons to skip work again this summer and down some beers and wings? I think not.

So, yeah, get out there and enjoy some soccer.