For these Games, the women competed in a 12-team tournament. Preliminary matches commenced on 6 August, two days before the Opening Ceremony of the Games. The teams were grouped into three pools of four teams each for a round-robin preliminary round. The top two teams in each pool, as well as the best two third-place finishing teams, advanced to an eight-team single-elimination bracket.
Note – The three best ranked European teams at the FIFA Women's World Cup qualified for the Olympics. However, the third best team England could not participate, because England competes at the Olympic Games as part of Great Britain, which does not compete in football. Therefore, the fourth European team would advance, requiring a play-off between Sweden and Denmark.
The women's tournament is a full international tournament with no restrictions on age. Each nation must submit a squad of 18 players by 23 July 2008. A minimum of two goalkeepers (plus one optional alternate goalkeeper) must be included in the squad.
Group winners and runners-up, plus two best third place teams advanced to quarter final round. Groups are lettered sequentially from the last letter in the Men's Football tournament (which has Groups A through D).
Vanina Noemí Correa (born 13 August 1983) is an Argentine footballer who plays as a goalkeeper for Rosario Central and the Argentina women's national team. She has played for Renato Cesarini, Boca Juniors and Social Lux in her country.
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