Get ready for the FIFA Women’s World Cup with these fun facts

The IX: Soccer Monday with Annie M. Peterson, July 17, 2023

Hey everyone! When you read this I may still be in the air headed to Auckland for the Women’s World Cup. Or I might be sleeping after the long trip.

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Either way, more is coming from me for the IX, but I’m kind of rushed getting stuff together and packing. So this will be a somewhat abbreviated post.

But while I’m making my way there, here are some fun facts about the tournament:

Someone to Look Up To: Tallest Player: Philippine goalkeeper Kaiya Jota is 6-foot-3. France’s Wendie Renard is an inch shorter at 6-foot-2. Jota is only 17, which means she might still grow a bit.

Big Things Come it Little Packages: Zambia forward Avell Chitundu is just 4-foot-7, while her teammate Margaret Belemu is just under 5 feet.

Age Ain’t Nothing but a Number: Nigeria’s Onome Ebi and Canada’s Christine Sinclair are both 40, but Ebi is just slightly older. Brazil’s Formiga is the World Cup’s oldest ever, at 41 years and 112 days. Christie Rampone was also 40 when she played in her final World Cup.

The Climb: Speaking of Formiga, she holds the record fir most World Cups with seven. Sinclair, Marta, Onome Ebi and Homare have been named to six World Cup squads.

Goals on Goals: Marta holds the record for most World Cup goals with 17.

The Kids are Alright: American born South Korea forward Casey Phair will be 16 years and 26 days when her team kicks off. There are two other 16-year-olds: Italy’s Giulia Dragoni and Costa Rica’s Sheika Scott.

In The Club: Barcelona has 18 players on World Cup squads, most of any team. Chelsea has 17.

We’re the Kids in America: Sixty players from the National Women’s Soccer League will be at the World Cup. OL Reign has the most with seven. The NWSL has representatives on 16 of the 32 teams.

Simply The Best: The United States has the most overall wins at the World Cup with 40.

You Win Some, You Lose Some: Nigeria has the most overall losses in the World Cup with 19.

A Tip o’ The Cap: Australia has the most players with at least 100 caps with nine.

Stayin’ Alive: Seven Teams have been to every World Cup, the United States, Germany, Norway, Sweden, Brazil, Japan, and Nigeria. 

Where is the World?: The 64 matches for the Women’s World Cup will be played in five Australian cities and four in New Zealand. The field has been expanded from 24 to 32. The top two teams from each of the eight groups advance to the knockout round.

Welcome Back: Five current World Cup coaches also played in the tournament: Shui Qingxia, Hege Riise, Pia Sundhage, Martina Voss-Tecklenburg and Inka Grings.

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Also, I wanted to point you to AP’s Women’s World Cup hub, which now works on mobile, too! Yay! Here is some of the great work my colleagues have done. I’m really proud of this package, which is more we’ve done on any Women’s World Cup before.

I’m also listing stories here in the hope you’ll click on them and show my editors that there’s an audience for this work.

So, forgive me for all the AP links. 🙂

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France’s Selma Bacha hurt in scrimmage ahead of the World Cup.

Warm-up game between Ireland and Colombia abandoned after some 20 because it got too physical.

I wrote a story about the increase in prize money, individual payments, and the work behind the scenes to make sure it happened.

FIFPRO looks to use the World Cup in efforts to professionalize the game.

I wrote a story on how abuse scandals are spurring FIFA to take action.

Argentina looks to youth soccer for the Messi of the women’s game.

An epidemic of ACL Injuries is keeping big stars out of the World Cup.

I wrote about how the World Cup displays the inequities that exist within the women’s game.

AP’s profile of Alexia Putellas.

The big names to watch at the World Cup.

Nice profile of Alex Morgan.

The great Marta is playing in her sixth World Cup.

Our profile of Trinity Rodman.

A look at the rising stars at the World Cup.

I wrote about the big stars who are sitting out this World Cup because of injury.

Good profile here on Australia’s Sam Kerr.

We also profiled France’s Wendie Renard.

Steohen Wade, our sportwriter in Japan, profiled Jun Endo.

Really good story on Morocco’s World Cup team and what that means for the Arab World.

Might want to keep these bookmarked:

Team-by-team capsules for Groups A-D … and for Groups E-H.

Mondays: Soccer
By: Annie Peterson, @AnnieMPeterson, AP Women’s Soccer
Tuesdays: Tennis
By: Joey Dillon, @JoeyDillon, Freelance Tennis Writer
Wednesdays: Basketball
By: Howard Megdal, @HowardMegdal, The Next
Thursdays: Golf
By: Addie Parker, @addie_parker, The IX
Fridays: Hockey
By: @TheIceGarden, The Ice Garden
Saturdays: Gymnastics
By: Lela Moore, @runlelarun, Freelance Writer

Written by Annie Peterson