Australia and China PR have claimed Asia’s two places at the 12-team Olympic Women’s Football Tournament Rio de Janeiro 2016 with one matchday of the qualifying competition remaining.
China’s 1-0 win over Korea Republic earlier today meant that a point or more for Australia against Korea DPR would see both sides through. The Matildas 2-1 win over the Koreans did just that.
The qualification to the Olympics through Asia is a first for the Aussies, who represented the OFC at Sydney 2000 and Athens 2004, while this tournament has seen China extende their unbeaten run under coach Bruno Bini to 13 games, despite missing the talismanic Wang Fei through injury.
The two qualifiers meet in the final matches of the round robin tournament in Osaka on Wednesday. The Steel Roses, who were held to a 1-1 draw over Korea DPR in their opening game, must beat Alen Stajcic’s side to finish top of the standings. The Matildas have so far won all of their four matches at the tournament so far.
Today’s results means that Japan, 2011 FIFA Women’s World Cup™ winners, London 2012 silver medallists and the hosts of this qualifying event in Asia, will miss out, along with Korea DPR, Korea Republic and Vietnam.