The 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup is just a matter of weeks away. Joint-host nations Australia and New Zealand will entertain 32 nations from six football confederations this summer for the ninth edition of the competition.
Already, the focus is turning to the nations most likely to be in contention to win the tournament and be crowned world champions Down Under. Below, we look closely at the five countries hotly tipped to run deep into the knockout stages of the 2023 finals.
The U.S. women’s national team will fly Down Under full of confidence, and with good reason. They have won the last two World Cup tournaments in 2019 and 2015 respectively. Last year, they claimed their ninth CONCACAF championship too, justifying their strong favouritism to retain their crown as world champs.
They are priced as short as +270 with FanDuel Sportsbook to lift the trophy this summer. This operator is well-known for the competitiveness of its odds and betting markets, so this futures line is by no means inaccurate. The latest FanDuel promo code covers all sports, including football, with a sizeable risk-free promotion dished out to all first-time visitors.
It has been a truly breakthrough period for the English women’s national team. Last summer, England became European champions on home soil, defeating Germany at Wembley Stadium. In doing so, the ladies became the first England senior football team to win a major championship since the men’s 1966 World Cup triumph.
The success has catapulted women’s football to even greater heights in England and all eyes will be on Sarina Wiegman and her squad this summer. The squad flying to Aus will be a little different to last summer. They will be missing influential captain, Leah Williamson, who sustained an ACL knee injury. Beth Mead (ACL) and Fran Kirby (knee) are also missing from the travelling party. Nevertheless, the likes of Chloe Kelly, Ella Toone, and Alessia Russo have all enjoyed strong domestic seasons and will be ready to step up to the plate.
Spain’s women are starting to make their mark on world football in the same way as the men have done in recent decades. In early 2020, Spain entered the top ten of the FIFA world rankings for the first time. They also have a great crop of breakthrough talent, fresh from U20 and U17 World Cup triumphs last year.
As of March 2023, Spain placed seventh in the world rankings, but the sportsbooks believe they will go one better than the quarterfinals and reach the semi-finals at least. However, one issue that could work against them is an ongoing player mutiny against current head coach, Jorge Vilda. Last September, as many as 15 of Spain’s senior players resigned from the squad in protest at Vilda’s coaching style and personality. As yet, none of these players have returned to the fold, with Vilda taking a defiant stance when interviewed by AS. All of which means Vilda could be promoting more of the U20 and U17 stars sooner than he’d envisaged.
The German women’s national team will be keen to use their Euro 2022 final loss to England as fuel to go one better at the 2023 World Cup. The two-time world champions have seen many countries catch up in footballing terms since their last World Cup victory in 2007. However, they remain a force to be reckoned with on and off the field.
Despite the anticipated retirement of stalwart Dzsenifer Marozsan, there is plenty to like about this German squad. Young, dynamic talents such as Jule Brand and Lena Oberdorf have plenty of experience despite their tender years. It’s also high time for striker Lea Schuller to have a prolific World Cup, after disappointing in last year’s Euros and at the 2019 World Cup.
The French women’s national team has a new leader at the helm for this summer’s World Cup finals. It will be two World Cups in two years for new head coach Herve Renard, who coached Saudi Arabia at the men’s 2022 finals in Qatar. Renard resigned from his role in the Middle East to replace Corinne Diacre earlier this year.
France looked strong at last summer’s Euro 2022 finals, powering their way into the semi-finals before running out of steam. Captain Wendie Renard – who is not related to Herve – is a key figure in this French squad, with the likes of Marie-Antoinette Katoto and Kadidiatou Diani also potential match-winners.
An honourable mention must also go to the Australian women’s side, who are sixth favourites to win the world title on home soil. With hot-shot Sam Kerr in attack, the Matildas will always have a chance in front of goal.
Although America are the red-hot favourites to make it a hat-trick of successive World Cups, the potential for upsets at this year’s finals is as great as it has ever been.