Wednesday, June 15, 2011

The African Flava In The 2011 Women's World Cup

Being the huge sports fan I am, I love big international events, especially when women are competing in them.

Since women don't get much love from the male dominated sportscasting world, one place they will get it is here at TransGriot.

One of the upcoming events I'm looking forward to watching is the 2011 FIFA Women's World Cup Germany is hosting.   When that tournament starts later this month I'll be rooting for Team USA to win our third FIFA world title and hope our Canadian and Mexican neighbors do well on the world stage until we play them.

But being a proud child of the African Diaspora as well, I have my eye on Nigeria and Equatorial Guinea, the African continental representatives for that 16 nation tournament.   England has several African descended players on the Three Lions.  Marta will attempt to lead Brazil to their first FIFA Women's World Cup title and are one of the favorites to take the trophy home.  

While I was perusing the news about the upcoming World Cup and checking out the rosters for the various squads, was pleased to learn the interesting news that the African Diaspora flava isn't just limited to the players on the field.

The president of the 2011 World Cup Organizing Committee is Steffi Jones, whose father is African American and holds dual citizenship in both the US and Germany.

She played on the 2003 German FIFA world championship team, is a three time European champion, and a commentator for the German network ZDF for their international football coverage.  

The coach of the English squad is Hope Powell, CBE.   She's a former international player herself and has been the English women's team coach since June 1998.   In addition to being the first woman to do so and leading the English squad to a FIFA number 8 world ranking, in 2003 Powell became the first female coach to earn a UEFA Pro License.

She also led the now number 10 ranked FIFA world ranked Three Lions in April to a 2-1 victory over my FIFA number one ranked girls in a London friendly.   It was the first time since 1988 that England had beaten the USA in a friendly match and caused much weeping and gnashing of teeth about whether Team USA was up for the challenge.  .

I'm looking forward to watching the 2011 FIFA World Cup when it starts June 26 and seeing how the sisters of the diaspora do.

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