News of Note: Final match of the Fan Tribute Series is tonight… Name and logo for the new women’s pro league to be revealed tonight… Mexico defeats Brazil in Brazil… Portland’s franchise will be named “Portland Thorns FC”… 2015 Women’s World Cup Canada Official Emblem unveiled… USWNT to host Scotland in February… 2013 Algarve Cup groups mostly confirmed…
Final match of the Fan Tribute Series is tonight: The tenth match of the United States Women’s National Team’s post-Olympics celebration series will be played tonight at Florida Atlantic University, versus China. The match will be televised by both NBC Sports Network and Univision Deportes Network, with coverage beginning at 7:00 p.m. ET.
Name and logo for the new women’s pro league to be revealed tonight: Per U.S. Soccer, at halftime of tonight’s USWNT/China friendly, the league’s name, along with its logo, will be revealed on national television (NBC Sports Network and Univision Deportes Network).
Mexico defeats Brazil in Brazil: Thursday night, the Mexico Women’s National Team (ranked #24) faced Brazil (ranked #4) on the second match day of the City of São Paulo International Tournament, and pulled out a 2:1 victory on an 89th minute goal by its veteran captain, Maribel Dominguez.This is apparently Mexico’s first win against Brazil.
Brazil scored first, in the 14th minute, when Marta crossed the ball in front of goal to Rosana, who was challenged by Under-17 defender Paulina Solis. Mexico’s write-up lists that as an own goal by Solis, while Brazil’s write-up credits Rosana. In the 61st minute, Pepperdine University senior Anisa Guajardo stripped the ball from Brazil’s left fullback, charged toward goal, and coolly sent in an angled shot to the far post, past Brazil’s ‘keeper, Andreia. A few minutes later, Brazil earned a penalty kick after Mexico’s Alina Garciamendez was adjudged to have fouled Marta in the box. Cristiane took the penalty, and aimed for the lower-left corner, but sent her shot scurrying beyond the post. In the minutes after the missed penalty, Brazil had a couple of other good chances, but failed to convert: first by Marta, charging in on goal, who sent her shot just wide right, and a header on a corner kick that was saved by Mexico’s goalkeeper, Celia Santiago. Mexico’s winning goal came when Dominguez, who did not start the match, latched onto on an errant pass at midfield and raced down the right flank, then sent a hard shot into the upper left corner from outside the box. See also: FMF write-up (in Spanish), CBF write-up (in Portuguese).
In the other match on Thursday, Portugal held Denmark to a scoreless draw. The next match day of the tournament is Sunday, with Brazil facing Denmark and Mexico taking on Portugal in the final matches of the round-robin phase.
Portland’s franchise will be named “Portland Thorns FC” — On Thursday, via the Portland Timbers website, it was revealed that the name of Portland’s professional women’s soccer team will be the “Thorns,” or more completely, “Portland Thorns FC.” The moniker is primarily in reference to one of Portland’s nicknames, “Rose City.” The team’s crest was also revealed (included below). See also: PTFC press release.
2015 Women’s World Cup Canada Official Emblem unveiled: On Friday, in Vancouver, the Canada Soccer Association held a ceremony at BC Place to introduce the official emblem as well as the “official look” (text logo, colors) for the 2015 Women’s World Cup (Canada Soccer, FIFA.com). The emblem features the standard FIFA wave on the right, with a figurative maple leaf on the left. FIFA’s microsite for the 2015 WWC was also updated accordingly with the emblem as well as the text logo and colors.
USWNT to host Scotland in February? On Friday (14-Dec), the Washington Post‘s Steve Goff tweeted that the United States Women’s National Team is “set to play” Scotland twice in February:
Earlier, on December 5th, Scottish international player Jo Love posted a series tweets, implying the same basic details, but also specifying match dates — Sunday, February 10th, and Wednesday, February 13th:
#uswnt set to play Scotland twice in February at southeast U.S. venues. Details being finalized—
Steven Goff (@SoccerInsider) December 14, 2012
OMG, just found out we play Americaaaaa in like 2 months #justwee'd—
Jo Love (@jolove6) December 05, 2012
Jo Love (@jolove6) December 05, 2012
These will likely be the first matches for the USWNT under new head coach Tom Sermanni, who is a native Glaswegian, and will coincide with the team’s first camp of the year as they prepare for the Algarve Cup. January is set to be a month for rejuvenation and — more than likely — collective bargaining negotiation for the USWNT players and U.S. Soccer.
Scotland narrowly failed to qualify for the 2013 Women’s EURO, so their focus has turned to Women’s World Cup qualifying, which, for Scotland and most UEFA teams, begins next September.
2013 Algarve Cup groups: Earlier this week, Iceland’s FA posted a news item (in Icelandic) confirming the top two groups in next year’s Algarve Cup. In Group A, the United States will face Sweden, now helmed by the USA’s former coach, Pia Sundhage, Sweden, plus Iceland and China (yes, again), while Group B will feature Germany, Japan, Norway, and Denmark. Not yet officially confirmed is Group C, however, Portugal (as hosts) and Wales (source: Wales’ FA) are confirmed, while Mexico and Hungary appear to be the final two teams.