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[ODDS and EVENS] Women's World Cup Reaches Quarterfinals with Plenty of Drama Still to Come

Nadeshiko Japan excelled in its first four matches at the Women's World Cup. Riding a wave of momentum, can Japan earn three more wins to capture the title?



Women's World Cup
Nadeshiko Japan players pose for a photo after beating Norway in the FIFA Women's World Cup round of 16 on August 5, 2023, in Wellington. (KYODO)

Read the full story on SportsLook - [ODDS and EVENS] Women's World Cup Reaches Quarterfinals with Plenty of Drama Still to Come

The to-be-determined champion of the FIFA Women’s World Cup is three wins away from achieving its ultimate goal.

Reaching the quarterfinals, eight national teams (Australia, Colombia, France, England, Japan, the Netherlands, Spain and Sweden) have raised fans' hopes that this is their time.

This storyline will be amended soon. 

The outcome of four quarterfinal matches ― Spain-Netherlands, Japan-Sweden, Australia-France and England-Colombia ― will require a new chapter to be written.

For Japan, four victories in succession over Zambia (5-0) , Costa Rica (2-0), Spain (4-0) and Norway (3-1), set up a quarterfinal clash with Sweden on Friday, August 11.

But first, remember this: Nadeshiko Japan is the second-lowest ranked team among the eight quarterfinals. Rankings, of course, don't decide the outcome of matches.

Japan is No 11 in the rankings, which were released on June 9. Colombia is the lowest-ranked team (No 25).

Women's World Cup
Japan goalkeeper Ayaka Yamashita trains on August 8 at North Harbour Stadium in Auckland. (Molly Darlington/REUTERS)

Overall Domination at the Women's World Cup

Since the Women's World Cup got underway on July 20, Japan manager Futoshi Ikeda's squad has been the best overall team.


The numbers: 14 goals scored, one goal conceded.

Still, it will take three more victories to haul in the winner's trophy.

Anything can happen between the start of Friday's match against world No 3 Sweden, which eliminated the top-ranked United States 5-4 on penalties in the round of 16, and the end of the World Cup final on August 20.

Continue reading the full story on SportsLook.


Author: Ed Odeven

Find Ed on JAPAN Forward's dedicated website, SportsLook. Follow his [Japan Sports Notebook] on Sundays, [Odds and Evens] during the week, and Twitter @ed_odeven

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