The U-17 Women’s World Cup will be held across three venues - Bhubaneswar, Goa and Navi Mumbai - later this year, FIFA has confirmed. In a statement on Wednesday, the football’s governing body stated that the draw for the tournament will be held in Zurich on June 24.
Host India, six countries – Brazil, Chile, China PR, Colombia, Japan and New Zealand – have been confirmed for the competition so far and are sure to feature in the draw. With a total of 16 teams set to contest the tournament, spots are still up for grabs in several confederations.
READ: U-17 Women’s World Cup: FIFA ‘open to’ reducing number of venues
Sarai Bareman, FIFA Chief Women’s Football Officer, said: “With qualifying ongoing around the world, we are very excited to announce the date of the draw, as well as confirm the three Host Cities for the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup 2022.”
“Following the recent FIFA visit to India, this is an important step forward and marks the start of the final countdown towards the tournament. We would like to thank the AIFF, the LOC and all the stakeholders for their support throughout the last two years as we have dealt with the evolving nature of the pandemic.”
The tournament was scheduled to be held across five venues in India in October, but during an inspection last month FIFA’s director of tournaments, Jaime Yarza, indicated that keeping the evolving COVID-19 pandemic situation in mind, they are ‘open to’ reducing the number of venues, if needed.
Accordingly, matches will now be played at the DY Patil Stadium in Navi Mumbai, Kalinga Stadium in Bhubaneswar and Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in Goa.
“Following FIFA’s recent successful visit to India, remaining cognisant of the evolving COVID-19 situation, the new footprint for the tournament was decided upon. While Goa and Navi Mumbai have already displayed considerable expertise in hosting international tournaments, Bhubaneswar, an upcoming sporting powerhouse, perfectly aligns with the values of growth and development of this youth tournament,” Praful Patel, the LOC chairman, AIFF President and FIFA Council member, said.
The tournament will be held between October 11-30.