The group stage draws for the 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup held on Saturday evening with Nigeria’s Super Falcons falling into a tough group comprising host nation, France, as well as 1995 winner, Norway, and Korea Republic in Group A. Nigeria will open their World Cup campaign against Norway on June 8. Nigeria will then face the Koreans on June 12 – a holiday in Nigeria and the first time Democracy Day would be marked on that day. The Super Falcons then finish the group stage with a game against the host nation and one of the tournament favourites, France, on June 17.
The Super Falcons qualified for the 2019 Women’s World Cup thanks to their triumph at the 2018 Africa Women’s Cup of Nations (AWCON) where they beat Banyana Banyana of South Africa via penalties following a goalless 120 minutes in the final played in Ghana. The resulting draws would please Super Falcons coach Dennerby as he has avoided the two countries he did not want to face – defending champions, USA and his native country, Sweden.
Africa’s other representatives at the World Cup next year, South Africa and Cameroon, will also not have an easy ride in France. South Africa got drawn in Group B alongside two-time World Cup winner, Germany, 1999 runners-up, China, and Spain. Cameroon on their part find themselves in Group E alongside reigning European champion, Netherlands, Canada, and New Zealand.
Defending champ, USA, got drawn in Group F with Thailand, Chile and 2003 finalist, Sweden, while many eyes would be on Group D which will see England take on arch-rival, Scotland. The group also contains 2011 World Cup winner, Japan, as well as Argentina. The Women’s World Cup will commence on June 7 with the opening game between France and Korea Republic. The World Cup final would take place on July 7 at the Stade de Lyon.