Following the Official Draw for the FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup Japan 2012, the 16 nations now know the route they must negotiate to reach the knockout stage. FIFA.com was there to record the reactions of the coaches and officials involved.
We can’t predict anything before we play. Aside from thinking about our opponents, we need to concentrate on ourselves. I want the players to grow through this tournament and to be players who will become members of the Nadeshiko in the future Hiroshi Yoshida, Japan coach
It is an honour to play the opening match against the home team and a strong opponent. Japan is a familiar rival and we can now begin our gameplan for each match.
Leonardo Cuellar, Mexico coach
We are happy to be facing Japan. We know they are strong but for us it will be a big experience.
Yannick Schwery, Switzerland coach
We are very excited to be playing the host nation in this time of great momentum for football in Japan. To be able to play in Miyagi also means a lot to our country as that area suffered, as we did, from an earthquake in the past two years.
Aaron McFarland, New Zealand coach
We don’t know our opponents’ current players very well. However, based on history, Korea will be a tough opponent. Our goal is to go to the final and hopefully win.
Miguel Ernesto de Andrade Silva, Brazil team manager
We know our three opponents pretty well, and Brazil will be the toughest amongst them. We will do our best to reach the last eight at least.
Sein Kim, Korea Republic team manager
The draw has offered us a tough group but we are confident. We respect the quality of our opponents but we are not afraid of them. In Italy, women’s football needs to improve and each success can help grow interest and raise the level.
Corrado Corradini, Italy coach
We have not played anyone in our group previously, but we are very determined and optimistic. We will give our all. I left my thoughts about the draw to fate, knowing that no matter the result it was determined by God.
Omon Faith Ben-Anuge, Nigeria team manager
We are cognisant that there is not much difference in the strength of the participating teams in youth football. The first game will always be tough, regardless of the opponent. At present our women’s national team and U-20s are training together.
Kang Hong Ri, Korea DPR Deputy Secretary General
We are fairly familiar with our opponents based on research, but have no experience of playing against them. Our toughest opponent should be Korea DPR.
Andrew Olivieri, Canada coach
All groups are tough groups in the final tournament. We played Korea DPR in 2008, they have been doing well in many tournaments. Canada are a well organised team and physically tough.
Jarl Erik Torske, Norway coach
Our toughest opponents are likely to be Norway. Our team is training everyday and planning domestic and international matches.
Salvador Stumbo, Argentina team manager
Obviously every group is challenging and we know now how exciting this World Cup is going to be. There is still a lot of hard work ahead but we are excited about the opportunity and challenge of becoming the best possible team we can be heading into the World Cup.
Jim Moorhouse, Director USA Youth National Teams
All the opponents are tough. All we can do is prepare well for all the matches. Our first goal is to try and qualify from the group stage.
Tiezheng Yin, China PR coach
I think in every group there are big women’s football countries. We have already played against USA this year therefore it is the team we know best in the group. They have a very strong team. Ghana and China are also strong opponents and we need to focus fully on them.
Renate Lingor, Germany team manager
They are all very strong teams and we shall have to prepare well to make an impression.
Emmanuel Asamoah Owusu-Ansagh, Ghana team manager
photos Janos Schmidt