The semifinals for the African Women’s Championship (AWC) are set: Nigeria takes on Cameroon and Equatorial Guinea plays South Africa. The winners of Thursday’s semifinals qualify for the World Cup and advance to the AWC finals on Monday, Nov. 14, at Sinaba Stadium. At the CONMEBOL qualifiers in Ecuador, favorites Brazil and Argentina are unbeaten. Brazil has qualified for every World Cup, Argentina the last two. But Chile, Paraguay, and Colombia look to be legitimate contenders. All five teams are unbeaten heading into Wednesday. Canada capped off its phenomenal run in the CONCACAF qualifiers by beating Mexico, 1-0, on Monday. The U.S., meanwhile, beat Costa Rica, 3-0, to advance to the CONCACAF/UEFA playoff against Italy, which will determine the 16th and final spot in the 2011 World Cup.
In the biggest upset in U.S. Women's National Team history, the U.S. lost, 2-1, to Mexico in the semifinals of the CONCACAF World Cup qualifiers Friday night in Cancún. In the other semifinal Friday, Canada qualified for the World Cup with its 4-0 win over Costa Rica. The U.S. now must beat Costa Rica in the third-place match on Monday and then beat Italy in the CONCACAF/UEFA playoff later this month to qualify for the World Cup. In the CONMEBOL qualifiers, Brazil beat Venezuela, 4-0, and in the other Group B match Friday, Colombia beat Paraguay, 3-0, on goals from Paolo Dominguez, Maria Uzme, and Yoreli Rincón.
With Canada's 3-0 win Tuesday night over Mexico, Canada won Group A and will now play Costa Rica Friday in the semifinals. The U.S. won Group B with a 4-0 victory over Costa Rica and head into the semifinals where they'll take on Mexico (Nov. 5 at 8 p.m. local time). The finals and third-place playoff game take place on Monday, Nov. 8.
Costa Rica and the U.S. became the first two teams to advance to the semifinals of the 2010 Women's World Cup qualifiers with their wins Saturday night in Cancún. And it was the night of the Roridriguezes as Amy Rodriguez scored a hat trick for the U.S. and Raquel Rodríguez Cedeno celebrated her 17th birthday with two goals in Costa Rica's 3-0 win over Haiti.
The first day of the 2010 CONCACAF Gold Cup/Women's World Cup Qualifiers produced victories for both the U.S. and Costa Rica. In the U.S.'s 5-0 win over Haiti, Abby Wambach scored three goals, Amy Rodriguez scored one as did Rachel Buehler, her first USWNT goal.