Surprising Africa: Teams Set to Upset 2023 Women's World Cup
Debutantes and Powerhouses Aim for Shocking Victories at 2023 Women's World Cup
- Africa's debutantes, Morocco, and Zambia, set to make an impact at the 2023 Women's World Cup.
- South Africa's powerful women's football team seeks success after overcoming a pay dispute.
- Nigeria's experienced squad led by star player Asisat Oshoala aims to shine in the tournament.
- Despite lower rankings, African teams hope to cause upsets and reach the knockout rounds.
The 2023 Women's World Cup is set to kick off, and African teams Nigeria, South Africa, Morocco, and Zambia are eager to make their mark. While not among the favorites, these teams possess the potential to cause upsets and advance far in the tournament, showcasing the growth of women's football on the continent.
The 2023 Women's World Cup is about to kick off, and this year's tournament is especially exciting for Africa as four teams – Nigeria, South Africa, Morocco, and Zambia – are taking part. While these African teams might not be among the favorites to win the coveted trophy, they have the potential to cause upsets and make their mark on the global stage of women's football.
Zambia, making their debut in this elite tournament, showed glimpses of brilliance during the Tokyo 2020 Summer Olympics. Led by star striker Barbra Banda, who achieved the remarkable feat of scoring back-to-back hat-tricks at the Olympics, Zambia aims to make a big impact. Banda's leadership and talent will be crucial for the team's success as they face tough opponents like Japan, Costa Rica, and Spain.
Morocco's national team, the Atlas Lionesses, will also be making history as the first women's team from the Arab world to play at the World Cup. This trailblazing effort is bound to attract worldwide attention, and the team hopes to inspire women's participation in team sports across Arab countries. Morocco's star player, Rosella Ayane, born in the UK but opting to play for her father's homeland, brings the forward spark the team needs to shine against formidable opponents like Germany, Colombia, and Korea Republic.
South Africa enters the World Cup as a powerful force in African women's football after winning the 2022 Women's Africa Cup of Nations. However, the team's morale is under question due to a pay dispute that led to the refusal to play a warm-up match against Botswana. The players' complaints about the lack of recognition and benefits compared to the men's team are a common issue in African football. To succeed, South Africa must resolve their differences and focus on their matches against Sweden, Argentina, and Italy. Led by star player Thembi Kgatlana, the team relies on a youthful squad filled with players from their home country.
Nigeria, the most experienced African team at the World Cup, is no stranger to the competition, having participated since the inaugural edition in 1991. They reached the quarterfinals in 1999 and the second round in 2019. With co-hosts Australia, Canada, and debutantes Ireland in their group, Nigeria's star player Asisat Oshoala, a five-time winner of the African Women's Footballer of the Year award, will be aiming for her third consecutive World Cup goal-scoring feat after successful appearances in 2015 and 2019.
Despite African women's teams not being highly ranked entering the 2023 Women's World Cup, the expanded tournament format provides hope for African teams to shine and cause upsets. Nigeria is the highest-ranked African team at 40, followed by South Africa at 54, Morocco at 72, and Zambia at 77. The knockout phase is a realistic target for these teams, and with determination and skill, they could defy expectations and secure a spot in the later stages of the competition.
The 2023 Women's World Cup in Australia and New Zealand promises to be an exciting showcase of talent and determination from teams around the globe. For Africa, it's an opportunity to demonstrate the growth and potential of women's football on the continent. While the odds might not be in their favor, Nigeria, South Africa, Morocco, and Zambia are eager to leave their mark and make their countries proud by upsetting established teams and progressing deep into the tournament. The world will be watching, and these African teams are ready to rise to the occasion and surprise the footballing world.
In the 2023 Women's World Cup, Africa's Nigeria, South Africa, Morocco, and Zambia aim to surprise the world. Though not top-ranked, their talent and determination make them strong contenders for causing upsets and progressing into the knockout rounds, proving the rise of women's football in Africa.