Germany and Brazil Gear Up for Women's World Cup, Historic Debut by Morocco
Former champions Germany and powerhouse Brazil are set to commence their pursuit of the Women's World Cup title on Monday. A significant moment in the tournament's history will be marked by the debut of Morocco, the first Arab side to compete in this prestigious event.
Ranked second in the world, Germany boasts an illustrious history with consecutive World Cup victories in 2003 and 2007. Although they claimed an Olympic gold in 2016, their last major triumph dates back a decade when they secured the eighth European Championship title. With a strong performance as runners-up in the previous year's Euros, they are determined to build on that success. However, Coach Martina Voss-Tecklenburg has warned about the escalating competitiveness in women's football, acknowledging that teams have come closer than ever before.
As Germany prepares to face Morocco in Group H in Melbourne, Voss-Tecklenburg recognizes the quality and capability of all participating countries to present formidable challenges. Morocco, ranked 72nd, enters the tournament as one of the eight debutant teams, having earned their qualification as runners-up in the Africa Cup of Nations. Their coach, Reynald Pedros, expressed their readiness to compete and highlighted the positive experience gained from being debutants on the global stage.
For Brazil, despite achieving continental success, their performances on the world stage have fallen short of expectations. Securing a second-place finish in 2007 and reaching the quarter-finals in 2011, they faced early exits in the subsequent two tournaments. Veteran forward Marta, Brazil's all-time leading scorer with 115 goals, will embark on her sixth and final World Cup appearance in the Group F opener against debutants Panama in Adelaide.
Italy, a quarter-finalist in 2019, is poised to begin their Group G campaign against Argentina, a team yet to secure a World Cup victory in their three previous tournament appearances.