Soccer History - China
Two decades ago, Chinaâ€™s Womenâ€™s Football National Team placed itself into the elite of world football. They defeated Japan during the final for the title of the Asia Champions Cup (AFC Womenâ€™s Championship 1986). In 1991 the Chinese team lost in the quarterfinals against Sweden, although it could count itself as one of the worldâ€™s best eight. At the World Championship in Sweden 1995, China finally reached fourth place and further improved at the Olympic Games 1996 in Atlanta, winning the silver medal, second place behind USA.
The high point in the womenâ€™s team history was winning second place at the World Championship 1999 in USA. However, after that performance went downhill and in the worldwide FIFA Rankings China dropped from fourth place to eleventh place (as of April 2007). At the World Championship 2003 China was defeated by the Canadian team as early as the quarterfinals. However, China won the FIFA Fair Play distinction at the World Cup 2003, although this might have been of pretty cold comfort.
A new low point was reached at the Olympic Games 2004 in Athens, when China lost against the German womenâ€™s football team, the score being 0-8. However, since then things have been improving, which may nourish hopes for a more successful performance at the World Cup 2007.