FIFA : 22 MARCH, 2021, 4:52 PM
The Home of FIFA in Zurich will host the draws for the Olympic Football Tournaments on 21 April at 10:00 CET.
The countdown to the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games is on again. The COVID-19 pandemic may have forced the postponement of the Games until 2021, but enthusiasm and excitement for the iconic event remain undimmed.
In less than a month’s time, the 16 men’s and 12 women’s teams will learn the identity of their opponents.
The two draws will be streamed live on the FIFA YouTube channel to allow all participants to follow proceedings from their home countries.
The draws will be conducted by Sarai Bareman, FIFA Chief Women’s Football Officer, and Jaime Yarza, FIFA Director of Tournaments.
Speaking ahead of the draws, Bareman said: “The draws for the Men’s and Women’s Olympic Football Tournaments will provide a range of feelings and emotions, as the 28 qualified teams discover their pathway to glory and gold in Tokyo. As the Olympic Games approach, players, coaches and officials and their preparations will take a step closer following the draws, which represent a special and exciting milestone in men’s and women’s Olympic football history.”
Mikako Kotani, Tokyo 2020 Sports Director, added: “I am extremely thrilled that the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Football Tournament draws are finally upon us – an exciting milestone in our preparations to host Olympic football once more after Tokyo 1964, as well as to welcome the women’s game to an Olympic Games in Japan for the first time.
“These extraordinary tournaments will stand out in our memories and this experience will be different from the past editions. As Tokyo 2020 Sports Director, I am so excited to welcome these tournaments to Japan and am firmly confident that they will leave everlasting memories in the hearts of Olympic fans and athletes across the globe. I wish all the teams involved the very best of luck. See you in Japan, this summer!”
Tokyo Stadium will be the stage for the first match of the Japanese men’s team, while the women’s finalists will fight for the gold medal at the city’s iconic new Olympic Stadium, which will also be the setting for the Games’ opening and closing ceremonies. Sapporo, Miyagi, Kashima, Saitama and Yokohama will contribute to the Olympic passion by hosting exciting games from 21 July until 7 August 2021.
Ten teams have already qualified for the Women’s Olympic Football Tournament, with two more to come. With FIFA continuing to monitor the situation in relation to the COVID-19 pandemic and its impact on football, Cameroon are set to contest a two-legged intercontinental play-off against Chile, who finished second in CONMEBOL’s qualifying tournament. The play-off is scheduled to take place in Turkey on 10 and 13 April 2021. Korea Republic and China PR will also play off over two legs in April to determine the last Asian representative.
Fourteen teams have already qualified for the Men’s Olympic Football Tournament, with the final two places up for grabs at the Concacaf qualifying tournament taking place in Guadalajara, Mexico, from 18 to 30 March.
Japan has a great footballing tradition, having hosted several major international tournaments in the past such as the 2002 FIFA World Cup™, and multiple FIFA Club World Cups, including the next edition planned to be held in December 2021. Although Japan will be hosting the Women’s Olympic Football Tournament for the first time, the men’s tournament will be returning to the country for the first time in 57 years following Hungary’s triumph back in 1964.
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