1971 Women's World Cup

The 1971 Women's World Cup (Spanish: 1971 Campeonato de Fútbol Femenil) was an association football tournament for women's national teams organised by the Federation of Independent European Female Football (FIEFF) in Mexico in August–September 1971.[1] Held in Mexico City and Guadalajara, it is the second known tournament to be named as a women's football World Cup after the 1970 edition in Italy and the first time in the same place after the men's 1970 FIFA World Cup tournament in the previous year.[2] It was held twenty years before the first official FIFA women's world cup.

1971 Women's World Cup
1971 Campeonato de Fútbol Femenil
Tournament details
Host countryMexico
Dates15 August – 5 September
Teams6 (finalists)
Venue(s)2 (in 2 host cities)
Final positions
Champions Denmark
Runners-up Mexico
Third place Italy
Fourth place Argentina
Tournament statistics
Matches played11
Goals scored39 (3.55 per match)
Top scorer(s)Denmark Lis Lene Nielsen
(5 goals)

The tournament featured six national teams from Latin America and Europe, including hosts Mexico which qualified automatically.[3] Denmark were the tournament champions, defending its title by winning the final 3–0 against Mexico, in front of a 110,000 crowd.[4][5][6][7]

Background edit

A women's football international match was played in Scotland in 1881.[8] Later instances included games between British, French and Belgian teams in the 1920s, and a women's European Championship in 1957. During this time, women's football was often stifled or banned by male-dominated football federations in many countries. In Brazil, women's football was effectively illegal from 1941 until 1979.[9]

FIEFF organised a previous Women's World Cup in Italy in 1970, also won by Denmark.[10]

Qualifying edit

The 1971 tournament featured five different qualifying groups, four in Europe and one in the Americas, where Argentina was the only team included in the initial draw.[6] Italy qualified for the main tournament against England and Austria, but England was later given a place in the finals after all teams from one of the European groups (Spain, Switzerland and West Germany) withdrew from the tournament.

Similarly, France qualified by defeating the Netherlands after the withdrawal of Czechoslovakia, and Denmark qualified by default after both Belgium and Sweden withdrew. The Americas round was not played and Argentina qualified by default, as neither potential opponents, Chile and Costa Rica, fulfilled the necessary requirements for the matches to be played.[6]

Some of the qualifiers and finals games were officially recognised – for example, the Italian Football Federation classes all of the 1971 Italy games as full internationals.[6] The match between France and the Netherlands on April 1971 was the first FIFA-recognised women's international match: it was played in Hazebrouck in front of 1,500 spectators. However, players from both teams were unaware of the nature of the match; the French players did not know they had qualified for the tournament until their coach told them after the game,[11] and the Dutch team thought they were playing a friendly match against Stade de Reims (which provided most of the French players) to prepare for the official match in May. A protest was filled by the Dutch organization in charge of the team, to no avail.[6]

Tournament edit

Tournament sponsors Martini & Rossi paid for each team's travel, accommodation, and kits.[12][5] Goalposts were painted in pink hoops and stadium staff wore pink clothes, in order to try to appeal to women and families.[5] Ticket prices ranged from 30 pesos (£1.15) to 80 pesos (£3).[5] The tournament mascot was Xochitl, "a young girl in [a] football kit".[5][7]

The opening match of the finals, Mexico–Argentina (15 August) had a reported attendance of 100,000 at the Azteca Stadium.[13] An estimated 80,000 people attended the Mexico–England group game. The World Cup final, Mexico–Denmark, had an estimated attendance of 110,000,[6][14] a world record for women's sport. This figure was reported both at the time[4] and subsequently,[5] and surviving footage supports the estimates.[7] The football record at the Azteca Stadium was three years earlier, 119,853 at the men's Mexico–Brazil match in July 1968.[15]

The hosts Mexico qualified for the final after defeating Italy in the semifinals. Two days before the final, the Mexican press noted the players for Mexico were unhappy they had not been receiving economic support for participating in the tournament. The Mexican team threatened to skip the final but gave up their two million peso demand and the game went forward as scheduled.[14]

Denmark won the tournament after beating Mexico 3–0 in the final, featuring a hat trick by 15-year-old Susanne Augustesen.[16][6] The victorious Danish team were treated to a celebratory reception at Copenhagen Town Hall upon their return from the tournament.[17] However, due to the unofficial nature of the tournament, it is not recognised by the Danish Football Association.[17][18]

Squads edit

England's team included 13-year-old Leah Caleb, 14-year-old Gill Sayell, and 15-year-old Chris Lockwood; their captain was 19-year-old Carol Wilson[5][19] and they were accompanied by referee Pat Dunn as a chaperone and trainer.[20] 15-year-old Susanne Augustesen scored a hat-trick for Denmark as they beat Mexico 3–0 in the final.[6] Augustesen was honoured by the mayor of her hometown, Holbæk.[17]

12 members of England's 14-woman squad reunited in June 2019 for the first time since the tournament.[21]

Group stage edit

Group 1 edit

Pos Team Pld W D L GF GA Pts
1   Mexico 2 2 0 0 7 1 4
2   Argentina 2 1 0 1 5 4 2
3   England 2 0 0 2 1 8 0
Mexico  3–1  Argentina
Rubio   21', 54'
Hernández   30'
Report Cardoso   34'
Attendance: 100,000[13]
Referee: Cosentina (Italy)
Argentina  4–1  England
Elba Selva   7', 31', 34' (pen.), 71' Report Burton   13'
Referee: Cosentina (Italy)
Mexico  4–0  England
Aguilar   12', 43'
Huerta   23'
Zaragoza   49'

Group 2 edit

Pos Team Pld W D L GF GA Pts
1   Denmark 2 1 1 0 4 1 3
2   Italy 2 1 1 0 2 1 3
3   France 2 0 0 2 0 4 0
Denmark  3–0  France
Augustesen   7'
L. Nielsen   32', 67'
Attendance: 25,000
Referee: Salazar (Mexico)
France  0–1  Italy
Report Schiavo   23'
Referee: Caves (England)
Denmark  1–1  Italy
H. Hansen   10' Report Avon   43'
Referee: Minarich (Switzerland)

Knockout stage edit

Bracket edit

28 August — Mexico City
  Denmark 5
5 September — Mexico City
  Argentina 0
  Denmark 3
29 August — Mexico City
  Mexico 0
  Mexico 2
  Italy 1
Third place
4 September — Guadalajara
  Italy 4
  Argentina 0

Semi-finals edit

Denmark  5–0  Argentina
L. Nielsen   34', 50', 68'
H. Hansen   53'
Frederiksen   64'

Mexico  2–1  Italy
Hernández   7' (pen.), 24' (pen.) Report Carmen Varone   6'[22]
Attendance: 80,000 / 90,000[23]
Referee: Frère (France)

Fifth place play-off edit

A match for fifth place was played between the two teams which did not advance to the semifinals.

England  2–3  France
Janice Barton   10', 16' Armelle Binard   12'
Jocelyne Henry   22'
Ghislaine Royer   32'

Third place play-off edit

Italy  4–0  Argentina
Elisabetta Vignotto   4', 32', 67'
Elena Schiavo   63'

Final edit

Denmark  3–0  Mexico
Susanne Augustesen   26', 52', 62' Report
Attendance: 110,000 [4][5][6] /
112,500 [24]
Referee: Minarich (Switzerland)

Later tournaments edit

The tournament was later followed by the series of Mundialito tournaments throughout the 1980s, mostly held in Italy, and FIFA's Women's Invitation Tournament in China in 1988 before the first FIFA Women's World Cup in China in 1991.[10]

Aftermath edit

In 2023, several documentaries were released about the 1971 event:

In Mexico, Tan cerca de las nubes, directed by Manuel Cañibe, on that country's squad that participated in the 1970 cup in Italy, as well as the 1971 one.[25]

In Argentina, México 71, directed by Carolina Gil Solari and Carolina M. Fernández, on the Argentian squad's experiences during the cup.[26]

In the UK, Copa 71, directed by Rachel Ramsay and James Erskine.[27][28][29]

External links edit

References edit

  1. ^ "Coupe du monde féminine 2019 : à l'heure du premier Mondial des Bleues en 1971". ici, par France Bleu et France 3. 4 June 2019.
  2. ^ "Coppa del Mondo (Women) 1970". RSSSF. Retrieved 10 December 2018.
  3. ^ "Encanchadas: Alicia Vargas, la goleadora histórica on Apple Podcasts". Apple Podcasts.
  4. ^ a b c d Aldani, Giorgio (6 September 1971). "Calcio girls: Danimarca mondiale / Vignotto (3 gol) grande riscatto". Corriere dello Sport. No. 1971 - 52 - Fascicolo: 210. Retrieved 22 June 2020.
  5. ^ a b c d e f g h Bill Wilson (7 December 2018). "Mexico 1971: When women's football hit the big time". BBC News. Retrieved 10 December 2018.
  6. ^ a b c d e f g h i "Mundial (Women) 1971". RSSSF. Retrieved 10 December 2018.
  7. ^ a b c Domeneghetti, Roger. "The 1971 Women's World Cup: game changers? (2019)". History Extra. BBC. Retrieved 22 June 2020.
  8. ^ Gibbs, Stuart (24 October 2018). "The strange birth of women's football". The Football Pink. Retrieved 22 June 2020.
  9. ^ Costa, Ana. "The history of women's football in Brazil". sportanddev.org. Retrieved 22 June 2020.
  10. ^ a b Anna Kessel (4 June 2015). "Women's World Cup: from unofficial tournaments to record-breaking event". The Guardian. Retrieved 10 December 2018.
  11. ^ "First ladies pave the way". FIFA.com. 8 April 2011.
  12. ^ "50 años del primer Mundial femenino: lo ganó Dinamarca... con camisetas del Milan". Marca.com. 4 July 2020.
  13. ^ a b c Sandovol, George (17 August 1971). "Calcio girls: Un Messico travolgente nell'esordio dei mondiali". Corriere dello Sport. No. 1971 - 52 - Fascicolo: 193. Retrieved 22 June 2020.
  14. ^ a b "El mundial femenil que México olvidó". El Universal. 8 March 2017.
  15. ^ "El Monumental le gana a la Bombonera como estadio más emblemático | | Telefenoticias". 27 June 2013. Archived from the original on 27 June 2013. Retrieved 22 June 2020.
  16. ^ "Tilbageblik: Danske kvinder vandt både EM og VM, før DBU anerkendte dem som et landshold". DR. 16 July 2022.
  17. ^ a b c Nikoline Vestergaard (10 September 2007). "Verdensmester som 15-årig" (in Danish). BT. Retrieved 10 December 2018.
  18. ^ "Den glemte triumf - kvinderne, der gjorde Danmark til verdensmestre". idraetshistorie.dk. Retrieved 6 August 2023.
  19. ^ "The lost lionesses". BBC Sport.
  20. ^ Williams, Jean (2022). "Dunn [née Thurston], Patricia Alice [Pat] (1933–1999), football referee". Oxford Dictionary of National Biography. doi:10.1093/odnb/9780198614128.013.90000380715. ISBN 978-0-19-861412-8. Retrieved 21 September 2022.
  21. ^ "Women's World Cup: 1971 'lost lionesses' squad tracked down after 48 years". BBC Sport. 26 June 2019.
  22. ^ https://www.lfootball.it/2022/04/in-messico-nel-71-oltre-100-mila-persone-per-il-calcio-femminile-e-cera-anche-litalia
  23. ^ 80,000 (RSSSF); 90,000, "novantamila" (Corriere dello Sport)
  24. ^ "Da Danmark blev verdensmestre i fodbold". DR (broadcaster). Retrieved 22 June 2020.
  25. ^ "'Tan cerca de las nubes' de Manuel Cañibe: las futbolistas que olvidó el estadio". IMCINE.
  26. ^ Seijas, Rodrigo (19 December 2023). "México 71: La victimización antes que la narración". Funcinema.
  27. ^ Williams, Madison (19 February 2023). "Serena, Venus Williams to Produce Film on Groundbreaking 1971 Women's World Cup". Sports Illustrated.
  28. ^ Ravindran, Manori (26 July 2023). "A Pioneering Women's World Cup Was Erased From History. Fifty Years Later, a TIFF Documentary Is Making It Right (EXCLUSIVE)".
  29. ^ Youngs, Ian (4 March 2024). "Copa 71: Film shows record-breaking women's World Cup".

Bibliography edit

  • Barboni, Luca; Cecchi, Gabriele (1999). Annuario del calcio femminile 1999-2000 (in Italian). Fornacette (Pisa, Italy): Mariposa Editrice S.r.l. pp. 230–231.