Goal brings you all the favourites, underdogs and outsiders to win this summer’s tournament in France alongside the latest odds
The eighth edition of the Women’s World Cup will get under way this summer in France, with the U.S. women’s national team looking to clinch an incredible fourth World Cup title.
The 24 teams will battle it out for the biggest prize in football just one year on after France’s men’s team won the World Cup in Russia, and their female counterparts can follow in their footsteps and recreate history if they were to win on home soil – two decades on from when Didier Deschamps’ side did so in 1998.
As with every major competition, teams who are odds-on favourites are mirrored by underdogs and dark horses to upset the established hierarchy, and this summer’s tournament in France is sure to be an exciting spectacle.
So who are the favourites to win the 2019 Women’s World Cup? Goal takes a look at the contenders for the highest prize in women’s football.
Favourites to win the 2019 Women’s World Cup
The USWNT are firm favourites to retain the trophy that they clinched in the 2015 final held in Canada, after they demolished Japan in a thrilling 5-2 win, and again are the team to beat this summer.
Jill Ellis’ side have won their last 10 matches in a row as of December 2018, and the three-time World Cup winners will do everything to ensure that they remain the world’s greatest team. They are currentaly favourites at 7/2 to win the tournament according to bet 365.
Before the start of 2019, Ellis’ team had drawn just two of their last 18 fixtures and remain undefeated since a 1-0 loss to Australia in 2017. The USWNT confirmed their place in the France finals with a 6-0 annihilation of Jamaica in October 2018 at the CONCACAF Women’s Championship, and as the most decorated women’s side, have a chance to lift a historic fourth World Cup title. They will hope to overcome their disappointment for failing to defend their SheBelieves Cup title in March, though registered a thumping 6-0 win over Belgium in early April on the road to France.
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Stars such as Megan Rapinoe, Allie Long and Alex Morgan are all expected to play in their final World Cup tournament for the USWNT.
Host nation France, helmed by ex-Les Bleus centre-back Corinne Diacre, could follow in the legacy of their male counterparts on home soil and are 7/2 to win the competition. A win this summer would mark the first major international trophy for the country, who could win the World Cup just one year after the men’s team did so in Russia in 2018.
Les Bleus have been placed in a relatively kind group consisting of South Korea, Norway and Nigeria, avoiding the big-name likes of Japan and Brazil. The fourth-ranked team in the world could, however, be in line to face the USWNT come the quarter-final stage of the competition should they qualify from the group stages, with their opening test of the tournament coming against 14th-ranked South Korea on June 7.
2018 was a year to forget for the Germany, team after their male side finished bottom of a World Cup group for the first time in their entire history. Their female counterparts, however, seem to be in a decent position as they prepare to head to France in 2019, having been a constant threat in the European Championships after winning every edition since 1995 until they came unstuck in 2017.
Their performances in the World Cup, however, have left something to be desired, having failed to reach the final in each of the last two tournaments.
During the qualification process for the 2019 tournament, Germany were one match away from a clean sweep after dominating their group since the start – hammering the Faroe Islands 11-0. They have been placed in a group consisting of Spain, China and South Africa, and will face China in their opening game on June 8. They are priced at 11/2 to win the World Cup.
Women’s World Cup 2019 outsiders
Gareth Southgate’s England side enjoyed a whirlwind summer at the 2018 World Cup when they defied the odds and finished in fourth place after edging out the likes of Colombia and Sweden in the knockout stages.
As such, the Three Lions have helped rekindle a connection between the national side and the general public that had fizzled out in recent years, and the world’s eyes will be fixed on coach Phil Neville to deliver the same kind of hope with their female side, who have odds of 6/1 to win. England won the 2019 SheBelieves Cup after being dark horses for the majority of the tournament, beating out favourites USWMNT to the title.
The Lionesses enjoyed their best result in a major tournament when they finished in third place at the 2015 World Cup in Canada, and a majority of that side’s players will be on the lookout for revenge on Japan this summer following their 90th minute semi-final loss.
They face Scotland in their first group game in one of the tournament’s most exciting group fixtures on June 9, with a tough group consisting of Argentina and Japan as well.
Japan have odds of 9/114 to win the competition after their finish as runners-up to the USWNT in Canada in the 2015 edition. They won the 2011 World Cup held in Germany and will head to France with momentum after winning the 2018 Women’s Asian Cup, defeating Australia in the final.
They have been drawn alongside England, Scotland and Argentina in Group D of this summer’s finals, and will open their campaign against the South Americans on June 10 followed by a test against Scotland on June 14.
The Netherlands‘ women’s team are also priced at 14/1 to win the 2019 World Cup, a year after their male counterparts failed to even qualify for the 2018 tournament. The Dutch side finished second in their qualification group and won six of their games, drawing and losing one fixture before beating Denmark in the play-offs.
They have yet, however, to fully make their mark in the World Cup, with their best finish in the tournament coming in the round of 16 in 2015. They have had better success in the European Championships, however, winning the 2017 competition and played in the tournament finals in 2009 and 2013.
The Dutch team finished off their 2018 with a 1-1 draw with Switzerland in the qualifiers but enjoyed a three-game winning streak that preceded the stalemate, and Barcelona star Lieke Martens and Arsenal forward Vivianne Miedema are expected to make a huge impact for their side this summer in France.
Women’s World Cup 2019 underdogs
Norway are underdogs to lift the Women’s World Cup with odds of 33/1. The 1995 champions will make their eighth consecutive appearance in the World Cup finals this summer, though Lyon star and Ballon d’Or winner Ada Hegerberg is not expected to feature for her national side after retiring from the team in 2017 following frustrations with the manner that women’s football was treated in Norway.
Though Norway are still optimistic that Hegerberg will one day make the decision to re-join the national team, she stated: “Obviously, I’d love to play for my country. I’ve been quite critical, direct with the federation [about] what I felt hasn’t been good enough in my career in the national team.
“In the end it was an easy choice for me to move on in my career. I’ve been quite clear with them the whole way.”
Brazil have odds of 25/1 to win the tournament following their runners-up finish in the 2007 World Cup, and topped their qualification group with four straight wins ahead of rivals Argentina.
They are seven-time winners of the Torneio Internacional de Futebol Feminino tournament, last winning in 2016, and are defending champions of the Copa America Femina after winning the 2018 tournament in Chile.
The Seleccao have been placed in a Group C that also consists of Australia, Italy and Jamaica and will get their tournament in France under way with an opening fixture against Jamaica on June 9.
Veteran Brazil stars Marta – who leads as Brazil’s all-time top-scorer with 110 goals and is team captain – as well as most-capped player Formiga (who turned 41 in March) are both expected to feature for the Seleccao in the lead-up to the tournament in France and potentially for the competition itself.
Sweden are priced at 25/1 odds to lift the World Cup after topping their qualification group with seven straight wins and just one draw. They are silver-medal finalists from the 2003 World Cup and 1984 winners of the European Championships, and could be a solid threat in France this summer.
A Group F game against Chile awaits them as their first match in the World Cup group stage, followed by fixtures against Thailand, Chile and the USWNT in Group F.