Women’s football set to kick off London 2012 as Olympic draw is made
Great Britain's women's football team will play New Zealand in the opening event of the London 2012 Games, after the draw was made for the Olympic football tournament. The match will take place at the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff on 25 July – two days before the Opening Ceremony – while the draw also confirmed which of the 12 teams will face each other in the Group Stages.
Great Britain and New Zealand have been paired with Cameroon and Brazil, while the USA – gold medallists in 2008 – will face Colombia, France and North Korea. In the final group, Japan, winners of the 2011 FIFA Women’s World Cup, are matched with Canada, Sweden and South Africa.
The three group winners and runners-up will qualify for the knockout stages, where they will be joined by the two best third-ranked teams.
With matches being played at venues across the UK, it represents a fantastic opportunity for football fans to see the world’s best female players in action, and British coach Hope Powell is already looking forward to being involved in the tournament’s first game.
"It is the opener and I am really excited by the prospect,” she said. “It gives us an opportunity to showcase the sport and raise the profile of women's football in this country."