Sunday, 17th July, 2011

Outsiders Japan have won the Women’s World Cup by beating the United States on penalties after a gripping final in Frankfurt.

The game had ended 1-1 after normal time, meaning a period of extra time was required to separate the two sides. But even an extra 30 minutes could not split the sides, with each scoring a further goal, meaning the match ended 2-2.

With the United States having scored all five of their penalties in an earlier game against Brazil, they started the shoot-out as strong favourites.

However, the pressure of the occasion soon told and the United States could only score one of their spot-kicks to Japan’s three.

The result makes Japan Asia’s first winners of the Women’s World Cup.

And with over 50,000 watching the final in Frankfurt, the tournament as a whole has been deemed a huge success and the women’s game immeasurably strengthened.

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