After sharing a scoreless draw in their opening match, world champions Germany and FIFA Women’s World Cup China 2007 runners-up Brazil are now seeking their first victories of the tournament. Bottom team Nigeria and Korea DPR, the early leaders of the section, provide the respective opposition.
Nigeria - Germany, Saturday 9 August 2008, 17.00 (local time)
Brazil - Korea DPR, Saturday, 9 August 2008, 19.45 (local time)
Nigeria - Germany
The Nigerians have their backs to the wall following their narrow 1-0 defeat to Korea DPR, but their remaining group fixtures promise to be even more of a challenge. The Africans meet world champions Germany on Saturday, a match which has taken on a must-win character for the Europeans after coach Silvia Neid’s team shared the spoils with Brazil in a scoreless opening fixture. Victory over Nigeria would be a huge boost to the Germans' hopes of a place in the next round.
Brazil - Korea DPR
The Koreans lead Group F after beating Nigeria, but next opponents Brazil represent a stern challenge to the in-form Asians. The South Americans looked in great shape against world champions Germany, only a failure to make the most of their chances depriving them of an opening-day victory. Marta and Co will need to show more ruthlessness in front of goal if they are to take all three points at the second attempt.
The player to watch: Ri Kum Suk (PRK)
The player who caught the eye on opening day in Shenyang was without question Korea DPR playmaker Ri Kum Suk. The architect of her side’s triumph against Nigeria via a string of pacy bursts, intelligent reading of the play and the assist for the winning goal, the only blot on her copybook was a missed spot kick.
The numbers game
0 - Though Birgit Prinz and Co were unable to find the net in a tough opening encounter against Brazil, Germany keeper Nadine Angerer duly kept a clean sheet on her Olympic debut. Germany failed to concede a single goal en route to winning the FIFA Women’s World Cup China 2007, and Angerer would dearly love to repeat the feat at Beijing 2008.
“I was very pleased with our performance against Germany, and I’m very optimistic about our forthcoming game with Korea." Marta, Brazil midfielder.
“We want as many points as possible and a place in the quarter-finals. We have a single point so far, which is something to build on." Silvia Neid, Germany coach.