US wins the FIFA Women's World Cup Final
US women's national soccer team emerged victorious in the final of the 2015 FIFA Women's WC by beating the defending champions Japan 5-2. This was the third WC title for US after it last won the title in 1999. Midfielder Carli Lloyd who scored a hat-trick for US in the 3rd, 5th and 16th minutes of the play was the star of the match.
The FIFA Women's World Cup (WC) started in 1991 and has taken place every 4 years since then. The 2015 FIFA Women's WC was the seventh edition of the tournament. Canada hosted the 2015 WC and matches were played across six cities of the country. The tournament where 24 teams participated, began on June 6 and ended on July 5.
The 2015 tournament used goal-line technology for the first time with the Hawk-Eye system. Hawk-Eye indicates within one second whether a goal has been scored by a vibration and visual signal on each match official's watch.
Women's football till now struggles to attain the respect it deserves. The latest case in point was FIFA's decision to hold the 2015 women's WC tournament on artificial turf. Some players even took the 'turf war' to court alleging gender discrimination by FIFA. The lawsuit was eventually withdrawn because FIFA wouldn't budge but it promised never to use artificial turf at Women's WC again.
Artificial turfs are blamed for increased injuries on field and are known to alter the speed and quality of play. Artificial turfs being synthetic, can overheat upto inhuman temperatures causing dehydration and heat illness
24 teams were grouped into 6 groups of 4 teams. The matches were played in a round-robin format where each team played once against every other team in its group. The top 2 teams of each group and best four third-placed teams qualified for Round of 16. China, US, Germany, Japan, France, Australia and Canada were among the teams that qualified for this round.
The Round of 16 matches saw 8 teams move to the quarter finals. The 8 teams that qualified palyed the QFs were: China v US, Germany v France, Australia v Japan and England v Canada. The QFs resulted in US, Germany, Japan and England winning and moving to SFs. The semi-finals ended by US winning over Germany and Japan over England.
Carli Lloyd won the Golden Ball award as the tournament's best player. She had the same number of goals and assists (6 goals and 1 assist) as that of the Golden Boot winner Celia Sasic.