The women's football tournament at the 2012 Summer Olympics was held in London and five other cities in the United Kingdom from 25 July to 9 August. Associations affiliated with FIFA were invited to enter their women's teams in regional qualifying competitions, from which 11 teams, plus the hosts Great Britain reached the final tournament. There are no age restrictions for the players participating in the tournament. It is the first major FIFA affiliated women's tournament to be staged within the United Kingdom, and marked the first time a team representing Great Britain took part in the women's tournament.
|2012 Women's Olympic Football Tournament|
|Host country||United Kingdom|
|Dates||25 July – 9 August 2012|
|Teams||12 (from 6 confederations)|
|Venue(s)||6 (in 6 host cities)|
|Champions||United States (4th title)|
|Goals scored||70 (2.69 per match)|
|Attendance||661,016 (25,424 per match)|
|Top scorer(s)|| Christine Sinclair|
Each National Olympic Committee may enter one women's team in the football tournament.
|Means of qualification||Date of completion||Venue1||Berths||Qualified|
|Host nation||2005||none||1||Great Britain|
|AFC Preliminary Competition||11 September 2011||China||2|| Japan|
|CAF Preliminary Competition||22 October 2011||multiple||2|| South Africa|
|CONCACAF Preliminary Competition||29 January 2012||Canada||2|| United States|
|CONMEBOL Preliminary Competition||21 November 2010||Ecuador||2|| Brazil|
|OFC Preliminary Competition||4 April 2012||multiple||1||New Zealand|
|Best UEFA teams in 2011 FIFA Women's World Cup||17 July 2011||Germany||2|| Sweden|
The draw for the tournament took place on 24 April 2012. Great Britain, Japan and the United States were seeded for the draw and placed into groups E–G, respectively. The remaining teams were drawn from four pots.
|Pot 1||Pot 2||Pot 3||Pot 4|
The women's tournament is a full international tournament with no restrictions on age. Each nation must submit a squad of 18 players.
Group winners and runners-up and the two best third-ranked teams advanced to the quarter-finals (also see Tie breakers).
All times are British Summer Time (UTC+1).
|1||Great Britain||3||3||0||0||5||0||+5||9||Qualified for the quarter-finals|
|Great Britain||1–0||New Zealand|
Marta 73' (pen.), 88'
J. Scott 23'
Sonkeng 49' (o.g.)
|1||Sweden||3||1||2||0||6||3||+3||5||Qualified for the quarter-finals|
Schelin 21', 63'
Sinclair 58', 86'
|Tancredi 43', 84'||Report||Hammarström 14'
|1||United States||3||3||0||0||8||2||+6||9||Qualified for the quarter-finals|
Morgan 32', 66'
|Report||Kim Song-hui 39', 85'|
|United States||1–0||North Korea|
|Green indicates qualified for the quarter-finals|
|Quarter-finals||Semi-finals||Gold medal match|
|G1||United States (aet)||4|
|G2||France||1||Bronze medal match|
|Fischer 18'||Report||Georges 29'
|United States||2–0||New Zealand|
|Le Sommer 76'||Report||Ōgimi 32'
|Canada||3–4 (a.e.t.)||United States|
|Sinclair 22', 67', 73'||Report||Rapinoe 54' (cnr.), 70'
Wambach 80' (pen.)
|Lloyd 8', 54'||Report||Ōgimi 63'|
|1||United States (USA)||6||6||0||0||16||6||+10||18|
|5||Great Britain (GBR)||4||3||0||1||5||2||+3||9|
|8||New Zealand (NZL)||4||1||0||3||3||5||−2||3|
|9||North Korea (PRK)||3||1||0||2||2||6||−4||3|
|10||South Africa (RSA)||3||0||1||2||1||7||−6||1|
In the first day of the Olympic events on 25 July, the match between DPR Korea and Colombia was delayed by a little over an hour because the flag of South Korea was mistakenly displayed on the electronic scoreboard in Hampden Park. The North Korean team walked off the pitch in protest at seeing the South Korean flag displayed by their names and refused to warm-up whilst the flag was being displayed. They also objected to the South Korean flag being displayed above the stadium, even though the flags of all the competing countries were being displayed. The game then commenced after a delay and rectification of the error.
Andy Mitchell, venue media manager for the London Organising Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games (LOCOG), read out a LOCOG statement shortly afterwards:
"Today ahead of the Women’s football match at Hampden Park, the South Korean flag was shown on a big screen video package instead of the North Korean flag. Clearly that is a mistake, we will apologise to the team and the National Olympic Committee and steps will be taken to ensure this does not happen again".
LOCOG's statement had to be reissued because it failed to use the nations' official titles, "Republic of Korea" and "Democratic People's Republic of Korea".
British Prime Minister David Cameron added that it was an "honest mistake" and efforts would be undertaken to ensure such a mishap does not recur. However, North Korean manager Sin Ui-gun expressed reservations about whether the incident was a mistake of intention and said: "We were angry because our players were introduced as if they were from South Korea, which may affect us greatly as you may know. Our team was not going to participate unless the problem was solved perfectly and fortunately some time later, the broadcasting was corrected and shown again live so we made up our mind to participate and go on with the match. If this matter cannot be solved, we thought going on was nonsense. Winning the game cannot compensate for that thing".
During the semi-final match between Canada and the United States, a time-wasting call was made against the Canadian goalkeeper, Erin McLeod, when she held the ball longer than the allowed six seconds. This violation is called in international play, and is intended to be used during instances of time-wasting. As a result, the American side was awarded a indirect free-kick in the box. On the ensuing play, Canada was penalized for a handball in the penalty box, with the American team being awarded a penalty kick, which Abby Wambach converted to tie the game at 3–3. The Americans went on to win the match in extra time, advancing to the gold medal game. After the match, Canada forward Christine Sinclair stated, "the ref decided the result before the game started." FIFA responded by stating that the refeering decisions were correct and saying it was considering disciplinary action against Sinclair, but that any disciplinary action would be postponed until after the end of the tournament.
The 2012 CONCACAF Women's Olympic Qualifying Tournament was an association football competition used to determine the two participants who would compete at the 2012 Summer Olympics. It was held at BC Place in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, from January 19–29, 2012.Football at the 2012 Summer Olympics – Men's tournament
The men's football tournament at the 2012 Summer Olympics was held in London and five other cities in Great Britain from 26 July to 11 August. Associations affiliated with FIFA were invited to enter their men's U-23 teams in regional qualifying competitions, from which 15 teams, plus the hosts Great Britain, reached the final tournament. Men's teams were allowed to augment their squads with three players over the age of 23. It was the first major FIFA-organised men's tournament to be held within the United Kingdom since the 1966 FIFA World Cup and was the first men's Olympic football tournament to feature a team representing Great Britain since the 1960 Summer Olympics in Rome.The gold medal was won by Mexico who defeated Brazil 2–1 in the final.Football at the 2012 Summer Olympics – Women's Asian Qualifiers
The Asian Football Confederation's Pre-Olympic Tournament. Eighteen teams entered the qualification for the two allocated spots for the 2012 Summer Olympics Football tournament in London, however, Qatar withdrew before playing any match. The competition was originally scheduled for February 2010 but it eventually started in March 2011.Football at the 2012 Summer Olympics – Women's team squads
The following is a list of squads for each nation competing in women's football at the 2012 Summer Olympics in London. Each nation must submit a squad of 18 players. A minimum of two goalkeepers (plus one optional dispensation goalkeeper) must be included in the squad.Women's association football
Women's association football, usually known as women's football or women's soccer, is the most prominent team sport played by women around the globe. It is played at the professional level in numerous countries throughout the world and 176 national teams participate internationally.The history of women's football has seen major competitions being launched at both the national and international levels. Women's football has faced many struggles throughout its history. Although its first golden age occurred in the United Kingdom in the early 1920s, with matches attracting large crowds (one match achieved over 50,000 spectators), The Football Association initiated a ban in 1921 that disallowed women's football games from taking place on the grounds used by its member clubs. This ban remained in effect until July 1971.