CHICAGO – On Saturday, December 8 the FIFA Women’s World Cup draw took place at La Seine Musicale, and matchups for each nations were determined.
The reigning World Champions United States were drawn in Group F along with Thailand, Sweden and Chile. For Chicago Red Stars players Julie Ertz, Morgan Brian and Alyssa Naeher Sweden is a familiar opponent. It was the Swedish National Team who shocked the world and upset the USWNT in the 2016 Summer Olympic Games. Both teams were in the same group in the 2015 Women’s World Cup as well, with the U.S. beating the Swedes in their opening game of the tournament 3-1.
The United States have played recent friendlies against Chile, who will be making their FIFA Women’s World Cup debut. The Americans were victorious on both occasions, winning the matchups and shutting out the Chileans over 180 minutes with scores of 3-0 and 4-0.
The USWNT haven’t met Thailand since a friendly back in 2016, a 9-0 rout in favor of the U.S.
— U.S. Soccer WNT (@ussoccer_wnt) December 8, 2018
Sam Kerr and Australia were drawn in C along with Brazil, Italy and Jamaica. Kerr and the Westfield Matildas are no strangers to Brazil in international competitions. The Australians knocked out Brazil in the round of 16 in the previous World Cup before the Brazilians exacted revenge in the Summer Olympics in Rio in a Quarter Final penalty kick shootout. In a pair of September 2017 friendlies between the two teams, Kerr scored three goals in two games. Kerr was also on the scoresheet when the two nations met in the 2018 Tournament of Nations, a 3-1 victory for the Westfield Matildas.
The final member of the Chicago Red Stars squad to qualify for France, Rosie White and the Football Ferns were drawn into group E with Canada, Cameroon and the Netherlands. New Zealand and Canada faced off in the 2015 Women’s World Cup, a scoreless draw in which White entered in as a substitute.
— New Zealand Football (@NZ_Football) December 8, 2018
It will be Kerr who will be the first Chicago Red Star to play in next summer’s tournament when Australia takes on Italy on June 9. The USWNT and Football Ferns open their tournament two days later on June 11, with the USWNT taking on Thailand and New Zealand facing the Netherlands.