FIFA Women’s World Cup: Things to Know About the First Edition
In 1991, the first ever FIFA women’s world cup was held; 61 years after the first ever men’s world cup
Football is a sport for everyone but since its inception, it has been a male dominated sport. Be it huge fan following, sponsorships or media coverage; the male players have received the best of all since the game’s formulation. However, with time, the female counterpart began to receive what they lacked for generations. Now, in 2021, they have it all; good infrastructure, decent wages, several endorsements, millions of followers on social media and much more.
The female part of the sport is widely followed and competitions such as the women’s Champions League and World Cup have gained traction in the past few years. Talking about the women’s world championship, FIFA launched the coveted men’s competition in 1930, but the organisation took 61 years to organise the same for women. In 1991, the first ever FIFA Women’s World Cup was held and, in this feature, we take you through some intricate details about tournament.
First match- The first ever edition was hosted by China PR and the first ever match of the Women’s FIFA World Cup was held at the Tianhe Stadium, Guangzhou. On that day, 65,000 ecstatic fans crowded the stadium to witness the historic event. China PR took on Norway and defeated them with a margin of 4-0. The first goal of the competition was scored by Ma Li.
Total teams- The first edition saw the participation from 12 nations such as Nigeria, China PR, Japan, Chinese Taipei, Brazil, New Zealand, Denmark, Germany, Italy, Norway, Sweden and United States. The competition had a total of 26 matches and in those 26 matches, 99 goals were scored by various teams and players.
Who won what? – The first edition of the FIFA Women’s World Cup was won by the United States of America. Norway secured the runner-up position, whereas the third and fourth positions were secured by Sweden and Germany, respectively. The top scorer of the tournament was Michelle Akers-Stahl from the U.S.A and Carin Jennings from the same nation won the best player of the tournament award. Germany ended up with fair play winner award.
Match officials- For the first time in a FIFA competition, six female officials were hired to officiate the matches. All of them worked as lineswomen except for one; Claudia Vasconcelos who officiated a match and became the first women ever to referee a FIFA match.