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- The 2019 Women’s World Cup in France kicked off with a matchup between France and the Korea Republic.
- Over a month of competition, 552 players representing 24 countries will hit the pitch for 52 matches.
- The USA and France are the two favorites to win the Cup.
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The 2019 Women’s World Cup has begun, and it marks 20 years since the new era of women’s soccer began.
Over a month of competition, 552 players representing 24 countries will hit the pitch for 52 matches. That’s double the number of countries since the inaugural Women’s World Cup in 1991 in China.
The USA and France lead the way as favorites for the tournament with the USA being defending champions, and France having home advantage, but it takes more than that to win these matchups and be crowned champion.
Below we take you through the one player that can be the gamechanger for each country.
Argentina – Sole Jaimes
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International Appearances: 22 (6 goals).
While Argentina also has veteran Estefanía Banini, who’s been called the female Lionel Messi, Soledad Jaimes is a dangerous target, especially off crosses and sets.
She scored five goals in the 2018 Copa América Femenina and is also the first Argentine to win the Women’s Champion’s League.
Australia – Sam Kerr
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International Appearances: 77 (31 goals).
Australia’s pride and joy of its team is without a doubt, Sam Kerr. She is the country’s first women’s soccer superstar and is the highest-paid women’s soccer player in the country.
Kerr is also a member of the Chicago Red Stars in the US National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL), where she is the league’s all-time leading scorer.
Kerr made her senior debut at age 15. Now a decade later, she has cemented herself as one of the best strikers in the world, even after recovering from foot surgery.
At 25 years old, Kerr is in her prime and will undoubtedly be a force to be reckoned with in the tournament.
Brazil – Marta Vieira da Silva
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International Appearances: 144 (105 goals).
More commonly known as Marta, Brazil’s star enters her fifth World Cup. She is a six-time FIFA World Player of the Year and has played in four Olympics for Brazil, but has yet to win her first major trophy with the team.
At 33 years old, she has the most World Cup goals with 15 and has scored 110 goals in 133 matches for Brazil.
Speculation as to whether she will retire has grown as the games have gotten closer, but she insists the future isn’t something she wants to focus on right now.
"You never know … I want to make the most of this moment without thinking too much about the future," Marta told the Inquirer. "I want to concentrate on what I have right now, and this opportunity that I have yet again. I want to complete my story in soccer."
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Source: Business Insider –