Torneio Internacional Interclubes de Futebol Feminino begins Wednesday, Jan. 5, in Brazil and features two of the world’s top clubs – Umeå IK (Sweden) and Santos (Brazil) – as well as Palmeiras (São Paulo, Brazil) and a new Brazilian club Foz Cataratas (Paraná, Southern Brazil). The tournament will be held in Araraquara, São Paulo Brazil, from Jan. 5 through Jan. 15. The first matches on Jan. 5 feature Foz Cataratas vs. Palmeiras and the highly anticipated Umeå IK vs. Santos with Marta, currently out on loan to Santos, facing her former Swedish club.
In addition to a handful of players from the Brazilian Women’s National Team, Santos also features Icelandic international and former University of Rhode Island midfielder Thorunn Helga Jonsdottir, the 2004 Atlantic 10 Rookie of the Year.
Some of the names on the Umeå IK roster include keeper Caroline Jönsson, who played for the Chicago Red Stars of Women’s Professional Soccer (WPS) in 2009, Anna Paulson, a member of the Swedish Women’s National Team who has played for Umeå IK for nine years, Elin Landström, who played for Umeå IK against the 2009 WPS All-Stars, and Nigerian Women’s National Team forward/midfielder Rita Chikwelu.
Foz Cataratas began playing in February 2010 and has already proven itself as a rising soccer club. The team finished as runners-up in the Brazilian Cup and won the Campeonato Paranaense, the highest division in Parana, Brazil.
Following the Jan. 5 matches, games will be played on Jan. 9 (Santos vs. Palmeiras, and Foz Cataratas vs. Umeå IK), Jan. 12 (Umeå IK vs. Palmeiras, and Santos vs. Foz Cataratas), and the finals and consolation matches will be played on Jan. 25. Torneio Internacional Interclubes de Futebol Feminino will be aired live on Band Sports in Brazil.