- World Cup stadium hosted the event
- Six group-phase games to take place there
- Japanese delegation took part after friendly match
The official presentation of Maldonado as one of the three host cities for the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup Uruguay 2018 could not have had a more fitting context or setting.
The event took place on Wednesday 15 August in the VIP Room of the Estadio Domingo Burgueno Miguel after a friendly game in which Uruguay’s U-17 women recorded a 2-1 win over the runners-up of the last World Cup in this category, Japan.
As it happens, Japan will be one of the four Group B sides who will see action during the tournament at this very stadium, where a total of six fixtures will be staged.
The other four sides in that section will be Mexico, Brazil and South Africa. Maldonado will also host Uruguay’s final group game against Finland.
“The departmental government of Maldonado has been supporting soccer schools for girls for some time,” said Valentina Prego, coordinator of the Local Organising Committee of Uruguay 2018 and president of the Women's Football Commission of the Uruguayan Football Association.
“We know that women's football is still underdeveloped, but hopefully the World Cup can be the catalyst for change and that it can have the same development opportunities as the men’s game,” she added to the more than 150 people present.
Also in attendance were the Intendant of Maldonado, Engineer Enrique Antia; the Japanese consul Tonomi Kawaze; and the players from the two teams that contested the friendly.
“Maldonado is a city with a great deal of history and we’ve been very well received here,” said Japan coach Naoki Kusunose.
“It is also a country with a lot of footballing tradition. In fact, it organised the very first World Cup, so I’m sure it will put on a great U-17 Women's World Cup,” he added.
What they said…
“We’re delighted to receive them in Maldonado, the sporting capital of Uruguay. This tournament is taking shape and the city is proud to be part of it.”
Enrique Antia, Intendant of Maldonado.
“We’re very excited that the World Cup is being organised by a country that supports its young footballers. This environment will surely help all the competing teams to flourish.”
Sarai Bareman, FIFA’s Chief Women's Football Officer, in a message read by the master of ceremonies.
“I want to thank the Maldonado public for coming out today. We’ll also be playing a World Cup match here, and it was very nice that they came to support us. I'm sure they will also come during the tournament.”
Deyna Morales, Uruguay U-17 player
Tickets now on sale!
The first sales phase of tickets for the FIFA U-17 Women's World Cup Uruguay 2018 began on 13 August with the exclusive Visa sale. This phase ends on 27 August at 19:00 Uruguay time / 00: 00 (CET).
During this phase, Visa Card holders can become the first to secure their tickets at FIFA.COM/U17WWC/TICKETS and take advantage of the cheapest seats available.