Every four years the world’s greatest soccer players take the world stage in fierce competition known as the FIFA World Cup. For one month the world tunes in cheering on their countries national team. While the men’s world cup is the more popular event the women’s world cup is just as exciting. Starting today the best in women’s soccer will start their journey towards one of the most coveted trophies in international sports. This year’s competition will be taking place in Canada, with the final in Vancouver on July 5th. 24 countries will be competing for the title; Mexico, Costa Rica, Brazil, Columbia, Ecuador, Ivory Coast, Nigeria, Cameroon, Spain, France, Germany, Norway, England, Switzerland, Netherlands, Sweden, China, South Korea, Thailand, Japan and the United States.
The United States women’s soccer team has won two Women’s World Cups (1991 and 1999) and are out to get that their third. During the last month, the team has been playing in a series of send off matches as final preparations for the 2015 World Cup. I was lucky enough to attend two of these matches. On May 10th, the team played to a 3-0 victory against Ireland at Avaya Stadium in San Jose, Ca, in front of a sold out Mother’s Day crowd. On May 17th, they headed south Stubhub Center in Carson, Ca and beat local rivals, Mexico, 5-1. The final game of the series was played at Red Bull Area on May 30, where the team played to a scoreless draw against South Korea.
While some soccer pundits think that the Lady Yanks won’t even make it out of the round of eight, many die hard fans believe quite the opposite. Last summer the famous “I Believe” chant was made popular while supporting the U.S. men’s national team and the same is still true for the women’s team. Many fans stand behind the U.S. Women’s team and want to see them earn another World Cup and a third star for their jersey. One group in particular, the American Outlaws (a United States Supporters Group) is bringing thousands to the Women’s World Cup this month. Members of the group that can not attend the tournament are invited to attend viewing parties across the country with other supporters.
The United States Soccer team has no shortage of big names. Abby Wambach holds the international scoring record and has been smashing records since she made her international debut in 2001. Sydney Leroux, a 25 year old known for her dangerous attacking and goal scoring methods, who also strives to be a role model for younger players. Alex Morgan, who is the 10 player in female history to reach 50 international goals. Megan Rapinoe, who recently celebrated her 100th game for the United States. Hope Solo, who despite troubles in her personal life, has been credited as being one of the best goalkeepers in the world with over 83 shutouts.
The U.S. Women’s national team start their World Cup campaign on Monday, June 8th at 4:30pm PT against Australia. You can find your local U.S. viewing party at www.theamericanoutlaws.com