Well, here we are again, the end of another major women’s tournament, and time again for the AWK All-Curren Team. I call it that not out of a massive ego, but to indicate that it is indeed my choices and opinions. I point that out up front because for some reason choosing the best team from the Olympics was even tougher than the World Cup, even though there were fewer teams.
As with the World Cup, I sought to put together a real squad, one that could actually play (as opposed to starting nine forwards where we could score at will, but might end up playing Marta and Alex Morgan at outside back) a legitimate match.
And as always, feel free to put your choices in the Comments. Just remember, if you put someone in, someone has to come out and vice versa.
Among the players who barely missed the cut:
- Portia Modise (South Africa), who had the goal of the tournament, and was very active in midfield for South Africa, who had their moments. Not enough moments for her to make the 18, though.
- Renata Costa (Brazil) had a very good tournament defensively despite her team’s lack of organization.
- Ali Riley and Ria Percival (New Zealand) might have cancelled each other out, as the entire New Zealand defense, including Jenny Bindon and Katie Hoyle, had a great tournament.
- Two players who barely missed the cut at the World Cup did so again here in Louisa Necib (France), who got off to a good start, but held the ball a little too long in some key spots for my taste, and Yukari Kinga (Japan), who was just edged out.
- Lotta Schelin (Sweden), who probably suffered from a lack of support more than her failings.
- And, perhaps the last cut, Yuki Ogimi (Japan), who scored three times in the tournament, including in the final, but in a tournament loaded with attacking players, we just couldn’t find a spot for her this time around. Next time.
So without further ado, here’s the squad: