Wednesday, 19 December, 2018

Stage set for Women's World Cup draw

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Players and staff celebrate winning bronze at Canada 2015 Expand Players and staff celebrate winning bronze at Canada 2015
Cassandra Castillo | 09 December, 2018, 00:22

Jill Ellis' U.S. side, who beat Japan 5-2 in the final to win the World Cup in Canada three years ago, were drawn with Thailand, debutants Chile and 2016 Olympic silver medallists Sweden in Group F.

Thailand have drawn defending champion U.S. for their first match of the 2019 Women's World Cup in Paris in June and July.

The US and Canadian women's national teams learned their group-stage assignments for the 2019 Women's World Cup on Saturday as Federation Internationale de Football Association held their draw for next summer's tournament in France.

The US will open their hunt for a fourth WWC title against Thailand at Stade Auguste-Delaune in Reims on June 11, then face Chile at Paris' iconic Parc des Princes on June 16.

They will then take on Argentina in La Havre on Friday 14 June followed by Japan in Nice on Wednesday 19 June.

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France, who have never gone past the semifinals, will also face 1995 champions Norway and Nigeria in Group A of the eighth edition of the tournament.

The ordering in each pot is by ranking, other than France - the tournament hosts next year - who are the one sure thing in the draw: they will occupy the first spot in Group A.

That looks the toughest group, bringing a wry smile from draw conductor and former England defender Alex Scott alongside former Manchester United and France striker Louis Saha in Paris' Seine Musical venue.

The top two finishers in each group will advance to the knockout phase, as will the four top third-place finishers, with the next WWC champion to be crowned at the cup final on July 7 in Lyon.

"If I told my players that we're only going to France to win the bronze medal they would say I'm the wrong manager because my players are ambitious and they want to be challenged".

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