It’s the final pack opening before the World Cup starts in earnest on Friday when hosts France take on South Korea in Paris in front what is set to be one of a number of sell out crowds across the country. In this pack Japan and Jamaica feature once again, we meet our first African representative and get to know one of the host cities. So without much further ado, let’s tear in!
Sticker 1: Gabrielle Onguene, Cameroon
CSKA Moscow striker Onguene will be one of the players designated by coach Alain Djeumfa to lead the line as the Central African side make their second appearance at the tournament having made their debut in 2015. She was a scorer in the last of three warm up games against Spanish club opposition and has 15 goals to her name from 53 internationals.
Sticker 2: Lauren Silver
Another member of the Jamaican squad to qualify through ancestral links, this time in the form of her grandparents, defender-come-midfielder Silver has had a somewhat nomadic career so far including a five game spell in Scotland with Glasgow City in 2017. She has recently signed a full time contract with Toppserien side SK Trondheims-Orn in Norway and her only goal came in 2018 against Cuba during qualifying for the 2018 CONCACAF Championship. More likely a squad player but may feature regularly.
Sticker 3: Saori Ariyoshi, Japan
Ariyoshi is the second “in the book but not in the squad” player to have been unveiled during these pack openings. The defender was called up for this year’s SheBelieves Cup but hasn’t made the final 23 for Head Coach Asako Takakura.
Sticker 4: Linda Dallmann, Germany
24 year old Linda Dallmann, if she plays, will be making her World Cup debut in France having made her first appearance for Die Nationalelf in 2016. She scored the second in a 2-1 pre-tournament friendly win over fellow finalists Sweden and has scored a further four goals in 21 international appearances to date. An unlikely starter if her lack of game time leading into the tournament is anything to go by but the SGS Esssen midfielder has the ability to make an impact.
Sticker 5: Lyon, SHINY
We round out the Got, Got, Need to Know Women’s World Cup Preview with one of the nine host cities at this summer’s tournament. It is the current home of Olympique Lyonnais the current queens of European football after they claimed a fourth consecutive Women’s Champion League title in Budapest. The Parc Olympique Lyonnais doesn’t make it’s first appearance until the latter stages when it becomes the centre of the women’s football world as it hosts both semi finals and the final. With all three games already long sold out over 170,000 spectators will descend onto France’s third biggest city over the closing days of what is hopefully a fantastic tournament.
In an interesting note the final sold out in less than half an hour, who wants to watch womens football, eh?
So that wraps up the 2019 Women’s World Cup Got, Got Need to Know Preview. Thirty unique reviews including twenty-two players, five participating nations, two pieces of marketing paraphernalia and one host city. Some of the names I knew before some were brand new to me but I hope you enjoyed this alternative take on a World Cup Preview, keep your eyes peeled on my Twitter feed @MFPTasty for more Women’s World Cup patter over the coming weeks.
Packs Opened: 6
Doublers; 2 (Argentina Squad and Ettie)