Sermanni optimistic after draw for AFC Women's Asian Cup
The Matildas have been drawn into Group B for the AFC Women’s Asian Cup 2008 alongside Japan, Korea Republic and Chinese Taipei at the official draw ceremony held in Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam this afternoon.
The Matildas have been drawn into Group B for the AFC Women-s Asian Cup 2008 alongside Japan, Korea Republic and Chinese Taipei at the official draw ceremony held in Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam this afternoon.
Matilda-s Head Coach Tom Sermanni was optimistic about his team-s chances following the announcement of the draw.
“I think we are placed in the more challenging of the two groups, but we have experience against each of our opponent-s in recent years so it won-t be as daunting as our first Asian Cup appearance,” said Sermanni.
“Although there is no qualification for the FIFA Women-s World Cup up for grabs at this tournament, it is important that we finish with a high placing to make sure we are seeded for the next round of qualifiers in 2010.
“We definitely want to build on the momentum that we had at last year's FIFA Women-s World Cup and continue improving the performance of our national team on the world stage," concluded Sermanni.
The eight nation tournament will be held in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam from 28 May to 8 June 2008, with matches played at the Thong Nhat Stadium and the Army Stadium.
The Matildas were the 2nd seeds for the tournament behind China, who won the last AFC Women-s Asian Cup which was held in Adelaide during 2006.
Australia will open their AFC Women-s Asian Cup 2008 campaign against Chinese Taipei on Thursday 29 May, followed by the match against Korea Republic on Saturday 31 May before the final group match against Japan on Monday 2 June.
The top two teams in each group will progress to the semi-finals and meet the top two teams of Group A which features China, DPR Korea, Vietnam and Thailand.
The Matildas, are currently placed 12th in the FIFA Women-s World Rankings, with China ranked at 14th, DPR Korea is currently the top ranked nation at 6th with Japan ranked at 10th.
This will be Australia-s second appearance at Asia-s premier Women-s Football competition. The Matildas were runners-up at the AFC Women-s Asian Cup 2006 after losing the final on penalties to China.
The Matildas will continue their preparations for the AFC Women-s Asian Cup 2008 with a three match tour to the United States at the end of the month, which includes two matches against the top FIFA Women-s ranked team, the USA.
For more information regarding the AFC Women-s Asian Cup 2008 please click here
For more information regarding the FIFA Women-s World Rankings please click here
For more information on the Matildas please click here
AFC Women-s Asian Cup 2008 - Vietnam - Draw
Seedings: 1.China PR (14), 2.Australia (12), 3.DPR Korea (6) 4.Japan(10), Qualifiers: Chinese Taipei (30), Korea Republic (25), Thailand (34), Vietnam (37) Note: Number in brackets indicates current FIFA Women-s World Ranking
Group A: China, DPR Korea, Vietnam, Thailand Group B: Australia, Japan, Korea Republic, Chinese Taipei
First Round Wednesday - 28 May 2008 Match 1: China vs Thailand Match 2: DPR Korea vs Vietnam
Thursday - 29 May 2008 Match 3: Australia vs Chinese Taipei Match 4: Japan vs Korea Republic
Friday - 30 May 2008 Match 5: Thailand vs DPR Korea Match 6: Vietnam vs China
Saturday - 31 May 2008 Match 7: Chinese Taipei vs Japan Match 8: Korea Republic vs Australia
Sunday - 1 June 2008 Match 9: China vs DPR Korea Match 10: Thailand vs Vietnam
Monday - 2 June 2008 Match 11: Australia vs Japan Match 12: Chinese Taipei vs Korea Republic
Tuesday - 3 June 2008 - Rest Day Wednesday - 4 June 2008 - Rest Day
Semi Finals Thursday - 5 June 2008 Match 13: Winner Group A v Runner-Up Group B Match 14:Winner Group B v Runner-Up Group A
Friday - 6 June 2008 - Rest Day Saturday 7 June 2008 - Rest Day
Finals & 3rd/4th Play Off Sunday - 8 June 2008 3rd/4th Play Off: Loser Match 13 vs Loser Match 14 Final: Winner Match 14 vs Winner Match 14