01/03/2024

USA are considered the favourites in Group D. (Photo: US Soccer)

The FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup begins on August 10, with 16 teams competing to become the winners of the coveted prize. Group D consists of Ghana, Japan, Netherlands and United States of America.

Ghana

Ghana Black Princesses posing for a team photo before departing for the FIFA U20 Women’s World Cup Costa Rica 2022. (Photo: Sport Brief)

The Black Princesses are looking to accomplish something that they have yet to do. This is to make it out of the group stage.

They have spent a long time in preparations for the tournament, playing friendlies against clubs in Ghana such as Prison Ladies FC and travelling to Europe.

The squad dynamic produces a good team with balance in all variety of positions. Heading into the games they will use a tactical approach, playing through their midfielders and attackers.

“For now, we have prepared very well and as you can see in our training here, the girls are ready and prepared,” coach Ben Fokuo said.

“We started camping about three weeks ago and we would be going to Europe as well to fine-tune our preparations.

“We are ready for the U-20 Women’s World Cup”

Head Coach: Ben Fokuo

Goalkeepers:

NumberPlayer NameClub
#1Cynthia KonlanPearlpia Ladies FC
#16Grace BuoaduHasaacash Ladies FC
#21Farahana ZiblimPrison Ladies FC
Cynthia Kolan will be the starting goalkeeper. (Photo: YouTube)

Defenders:

NumberPlayer NameClub
#2Abena OpokuAmpem Darko Ladies FC
#3Ayisha YakubuPearlpia Ladies FC
#4Rebecca AtingaPrison Ladies FC
#5Susan DuahAvaldsnes IL
#12Anasthesia AchiaaAmpem Darko Ladies FC
#19Louisa AniwaaPolice Ladies FC
Susan Duah has been a rock at the back of the field. (Photo: YouTube)

Midfielders:

NumberPlayer NameClub
#6Jacqueline OwusuEmek Hefer FC
#7Suzzy TeyeLady Strikers FC
#10Evelyn BaduAvaldsnes IL
#11Rahama JafaruNorthern Ladies FC
#14Azumah BugreIFK Norrkoping FK
#18Mafia NyameFaith Ladies FC
#20Cecilia NyamaRidge City Women FC
Evelyn Badu is a previous winner of the GhanaWeb Footballer of the Year. (Photo: Ghanaweb)

Forwards:

NumberPlayer NameClub
#8Mukarama AbdulaiDeportivo Alaves Gloriosas
#9Doris BoaduwaaHasaacas Ladies FC
#13Salamatu AbdulaiNorthern Ladies FC
#15Ophelia AmponsahAmpem Darko Ladies FC
#17Sharon SampsonOakland University
Mukarama Abdulai in action for Ghana during the 2017 U-17 Women’s World Cup. (Photo: The Ghanian Standard)

Player to Watch: Mukarama Abdulai

Mukarama Abdulai will lead the Ghanaian outfit this World Cup. The previous captain of the U-17 Ghana side, Abdulai brings plenty of leadership to the squad.

In ten games at youth level she has gone on to score 21 goals, which is just above two goals a game.

Her scoring ability led her to being chosen by Alaves to be their key forward. The Spanish league team has helped Abdulai develop into more than just a scoring striker, also delivering assists to her teammates.

Previous Results in the U-20 World Cup

2010: Group Stage

2012: Group Stage

2014: Group Stage

2016: Group Stage

2018: Group Stage

Japan

Japan is looking to win the U-20 Women’s World Cup once again. (Photo by Alex Grimm – FIFA)

Before the World Cup even begins, Japan will be without star defender Akari Takeshige, who had to withdraw due to injury.

Coming off an amazing performance in the previous U-20 Women’s World Cup, the squad will be looking to call themselves champions once again.

Their defence, midfield and forward are all stacked with elite level players. However, in the goalkeeping ranks Japan have gone with experience rather than skill. The team boasts great talent but their team chemistry may be an issue this time round.

Head Coach: Futoshi Ikeda

Goalkeepers:

NumberPlayer NameClub
#1Shiori FukudaUrawa Red Diamonds
#18Shu ObaEast Tennessee State Buccaneers
#21Nina NodaTokyo Verdy Beleza
There will be tough competition amongst the three goalkeepers. (Photo: East Tennessean)

Defenders:

NumberPlayer NameClub
#2Akane NishinoMyNavi Sendai
#3Ibuki NagaeAC Nagano Parceiro
#4Rion IshikawaUrawa Red Diamonds
#5Manaka HayashiJFA Academy Fukushima
#7Mihoshi SugisawaOmiya Ardija Ventus
#12Haruna TabataCerezo Osaka Sakai
#16Shinomi KoyamaCerezo Osaka Sakai
Manaka Hayashi comes into the squad as a late replacement player. (Photo: AFC/Twitter)

Midfielders:

NumberPlayer NameClub
#6Aemu OyamaTokyo Verdy Menina
#8Kokona IwasakiTokyo Verdy Beleza
#14Manaka MatsukuboJFA Academy Fukushima
#15Suzo AmanoINAC Kobe Leonessa
#19Riko YoshidaNittaidai SMG Yokohama
#20Urara WatanabeNittaidai SMG Yokohama
Aemu Oyama in action. (Photo: IMAGO-Images)

Forwards:

NumberPlayer NameClub
#9Yuzuki YamamotoTokyo Verdy Beleza
#10Aoba FujinoTokyo Verdy Beleza
#11Maika HamanoINAC Kobe Leonessa
#13Mei ShimadaUrawa Red Diamonds
#17Maya HijikataTokyo Verdy Menina
Aoba Fujino celebrating a win with teammates. (Photo: WE League)

Player to Watch: Aemu Oyama

Aemu Oyama possesses great talent and high potential. The 17-year old midfielder wields creativity, power, skill, technique, and eloquent vision with the ball.

She was the best player for Japan during the AFC U-16s Women’s Championships, and will be looking to continue her form in big tournaments.

Oyama is a menace in attack and should be watched at all times. On defence she can be lacklustre, but makes up for it when she has the ball at her feet.

Described as a wonderkid, she will be trying to illustrate just how good she is to the rest of the world.

Previous Results in the U-20 World Cup

2002: Quarterfinals

2008: Quarterfinals

2010: Group Stage

2012: Third Place

2016: Third Place

2018: Champions

More Football News

Netherlands

The Netherlands are looking to get further than the Quarter-Finals this time round. (Photo: Onsiranje.nl)

Making the U-20 Women’s World Cup for the first time, The Netherlands were able to clinch a quarterfinals berth in 2018. A relatively younger team, they will be relying heavily on their experience among their respective development systems.

They have the ability to go far with many superstars in their line-up but could succumb to the pressure of a World Cup.

With very little experience among the squad as a whole, the experienced leaders will have to stand up and show the younger players the way.

Head Coach: Jessica Torny

Goalkeepers:

NumberPlayer NameClub
#1Claire DinklaFortuna Sittard
#16Lisan AlkemadePSV Eindhoven
#21Femke LieftingVV Alkamaar
Goalkeeper Lisan Alkemade.

Defenders:

NumberPlayer NameClub
#2Kim EveraertsFC Twente
#3Marit AueeFC Twente
#4Samantha van DiemenFortuna Sittard
#5Nina NijstadSC Heerenveen
#13Fenna MeijerSC Heerenveen
#14Senna KoelemanPSV Eindhoven
#15Jeva WalkN/A
Samantha van Dieman in action. (Photo: Feyenoord.nl)

Midfielders:

NumberPlayer NameClub
#6Dana FoedererFortuna Sittard
#8Ella PeddemorsFC Twente
#10Danique NoordmanPEC Zwolle
#12Tess van BentemPEC Zwolle
#20Rosa van GoolAFC Ajax
Tess van Bentem in action. (Photo: De Stentor)

Forwards:

NumberPlayer NameClub
#7Liz RijsbergenADO Den Haad
#9Sanne KoopmanFeyenoord Rotterdam
#11Ziva HenryAFC Ajax
#17Zera HulswitPSV Eindhoven
#18Shi-Jona MartinaPSV Eindhoven
#19Charlotte HulstFortuna Sittard
Liz Rijsbergen will wear the coveted No.7 jersey. (Photo: AD.nl)

Player to Watch: Samantha van Dieman

Samantha van Dieman has grown up with football her entire life. Signing her first professional contract in 2019, she has been an elite calibre defender for Ajax and Feyenoord. Playing at the back of the field, she is constantly the last line of defence.

Playing 13 games for the Netherlands youth team and making three appearance for the Netherlands national team, she has a lot of experience playing at a high level. Her calm presence will come in handy in blocking shots and preventing scores.

Previous Results in the U-20 World Cup

2018: Quarterfinals

United States of America

The USA posing for a team photo before departing for the FIFA U20 Women’s World Cup Costa Rica 2022. (Photo: US Soccer)

The USA are going into the tournament to try and replicate their 2012 heroics, when they last won the U-20 Women’s World Cup. Full of confidence, the squad features a lot of experience with every player previously being capped at U-20 level.

The team chemistry will help them when coming up against other elite teams. 11 players on the roster have previously scored in an international match, not scared to take full advantage of their opportunities.

“We have a challenging group in Costa Rica and tremendous respect for the three other teams, but we also have a staff and players who embrace challenges and adversity, so we’re really looking forward to seeing how our team grows into this tournament,” coach Tracey Kevins said.

“For a young player, there’s nothing like playing in a World Cup. You can’t replicate it, so I’m excited that our players will get to pursue their dreams and experience all of this after many of them were denied that opportunity when the last cycle of World Cups were cancelled.

“We have a highly competitive group. I know they are all eager to prove themselves on the biggest international stage for their age group as they all aspire to take their careers to the next level.”

Head Coach: Tracey Kevins

Goalkeepers:

NumberPlayer NameClub
#1Mia JustusFlorida State Seminoles
#12Neeku PurcellUCLA Bruins
#21Teagan WyCalifornia Golden Bears
Mia Justus will be one of three keepers for USA. (Photo: Tallahassee Democrat)

Defenders:

NumberPlayer NameClub
#2Laney RouseVirginia Cavaliers
#3Ayo OkeCalifornia Golden Bears
#4Emily MasonRutgers Scarlet Knights
#5Lilly RealeUCLA Bruins
#16Lauren FlynnFlorida State Seminoles
#18Samar GuidryVirginia Cavaliers
Lauren Flynn previously played for the University of Missouri before transferring to Virginia. (Photo: Mizzou Athletics)

Midfielders:

NumberPlayer NameClub
#6Talia DellaperutaNorth Carolina Tar Heels
#13Olivia MoultriePortland Thorns
#14Carina LageyreDuke Blue Devils
#17Sally MentiSanta Clara Broncos
#19Korbin AlbertNotre Dame Fighting Irish
Olivia Moultrie is the player to watch for USA. (Photo: Oregon Live)

Forwards:

NumberPlayer NameClub
#7Alyssa ThompsonTotal Futbol Academy
#8Andrea KitahataStanford Cardinal
#9Michelle CooperDuke Blue Devils
#10Jaedyn ShawSan Diego Wave
#11Simone JacksonUSC Trojans
#15Trinity ByarsTexas Longhorns
#20Ally SentnorNorth Carolina Tar Heels
Michelle Cooper can always find the goal with ease. (Photo: Duke Athletics)

Player to Watch: Olivia Moultrie

Beginning her professional football career at 13-years of age, Olivia Moultrie became the youngest player to play in a National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL) game. A superstar since a young age, Moutrie is hoping to shine on the big stage.

Still 16-years-old, she has represented the United States through every youth level. Getting older, she is trying to make a name for herself overseas as the Women’s Soccer League rapidly develops. Even though she is known in the USA, she has yet to show her talents to the rest of the world.

She is calm on the ball and possess good control. Continuously providing her attackers with opportunities she is not shy to shoot the ball.

Previous Results in the U-20 World Cup

2002: Champions

2004: Third Place

2006: Fourth Place

2008: Champions

2010: Quarterfinals

2012: Champions

2014: Quarterfinals

2016: Fourth Place

2018: Group Stage

Group D Fixture

1. Ghana vs United States (Friday 12 August – 3:00am AEST)

2. Japan vs Netherlands (Friday 12 August – 6:00am AEST)

3. Japan vs Ghana (Monday 15 August – 3:00am AEST)

4. United States vs Netherlands (Monday 15 August – 9:00am AEST)

5. United States vs Japan (Thursday 18 August – 9:00am AEST)

6. Netherlands vs Ghana (Thursday 18 August – 9:00am AEST)

Predicted Group Finish

MPWinDrawLossPoints
USA31205
Netherlands31205
Japan31205
Ghana30030

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