WOMEN – European Teams (2016 Rio Olympic Qualification Process)

Women’s Team – Europe  by Derek Wei

So apparently the UEFA (Union of European Football Associations) are ran by very lazy people, as they didn’t even bother to organize their own qualifying tournament for the Olympic. Just kiddin haha.. but indeed UEFA decided to use 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup as qualification for 2016 Rio Olympic Games. So Germany, France and Sweden became the lucky trio to won the seats at Rio.

1: France

87940d8deffa5f29554ba0c6474bce7dImage retrieved from Wikipedia

History and Fun Facts

Nicknamed Les Bleues, the France Women Soccer Team has consistently delivered impressive performance on international stage during the past few years: they finished fourth back to Germany in 2011’s FIFA Women’s World Cup, and thus qualified for the 2012 London Olympic, in which they also finished the fourth.

2422924_full-lnd Image retrieved from FIFA Website

France’s Journey to Rio

The French started their World Cup with a 2-0 victory against England, the eventual 3rd place winner. After a 0-2 defeat against Colombia, the Les Bleues dominated the game against Mexico (5-0) and marched into the knock off round. In the Round of 16, the French beat South Korea with a 3-0 victory, becoming one of the only three UEFA teams qualified for the Quarter-final games alongside with England and Germany. Therefore, French was guaranteed a spot in Rio Olympic Games as one of the top-three placed UEFA teams in 2015 World Cup

2: Germany

240px-DFBWomen.svgImage retrieved from Wikipedia

History and Fun Facts

Just like its Men’s National Team, Germany’s Women Soccer Team has always been a solid competitors for medals in international games. The team consecutively brought home bronze medals in the 2000(Sydney), 2004(Athens) and 2008(Beijing) Olympics. They failed to qualify for 2012’s London Olympic though.

2653415_full-lnd Image retrieved from FIFA Website

Germany’s Journey to Rio

Similar to the French, the German Team did well in the group stage of 2015 Canada World Cup (including a 10-0 victory against Ivory Coast). After easily beating Sweden in the Round of 16, they already won their ticket to Rio as one of the top three ranked UEFA teams in 2015 World Cup. They then went ahead to knock out France in the penalty game, and eventually took home the bronze medal after beating England in the 3rd place race.

 3: Sweden

Sweden_national_football_team_logoImage retrieved from Wikipedia

History and Fun Facts

The Scandinavians team has an impressive record of having qualified for every Women’s Olympic Soccer Game to date.

2651734_full-lnd Image retrieved from FIFA Website

Sweden’s Journey to Rio

I would have to say that it’s kind of surprising to see Sweden becoming the third UEFA teams to qualify for the Rio Olympic Games, as they didn’t even win a single game during the group stage in 2015 World Cup. Nevertheless, they were able to march into the Round of 16, before defeat by Germany.

However, as one of the top three ranked UEFA teams – England, doesn’t not have its own National Olympic Committee due to political reasons, the country doesn’t participate in Olympic Football Tournament. Therefore, there’s one seat left for UEFA teams to go to Rio. Therefore, the fours UEFA teams that were knocked out during Round of 16 (Norway, Sweden, Netherlands, and Switzerland) had a mini tournament. After beating Norway and Switzerland with 1-0 victories and forcing a draw with the Dutch, Sweden took home the last ticket to Rio for UEFA countries.


How to cite this page: “WOMEN – European Teams (2016 Rio Olympic Qualification Process)”, Written by Derek Wei (2016). Journey to Rio, Olympic Football 2016 Guide, Soccer Politics Blog, Duke University, http://sites.duke.edu/wcwp/tournament-guides/olympic-football-2016-guide/journey-to-rio-qualification-process-rules-for-2016-olympic-games/women-european-teams/ (accessed on (date)).


1: Wikipedia contributors, “Football at the 2016 Summer Olympics,” Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Football_at_the_2016_Summer_Olympics&oldid=717243806 (accessed April 30, 2016)

2: Wikipedia contributors, “2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup,” Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=2015_FIFA_Women%27s_World_Cup&oldid=713793942 (accessed April 30, 2016)

3: FIFA Website, “Women’s Olympic Football Tournament, Rio 2016, France Team Page”, http://www.fifa.com/womensolympic/teams/team=1884761/index.html (accessed April 30, 2016)

4: FIFA Website, “Women’s Olympic Football Tournament, Rio 2016, Germany Team Page”, http://www.fifa.com/womensolympic/teams/team=1885016/index.html (accessed April 30, 2016)

5: FIFA Website, “Women’s Olympic Football Tournament, Rio 2016, Sweden Team Page”, http://www.fifa.com/womensolympic/teams/team=1882883/index.html (accessed April 30, 2016)