Women’s World Cup Quarterfinals

We are now down to the last 8 teams, and I swear the schedule for the Women’s World Cup is shorter than the men’s because we’ve barely had time to breathe.

I’ve realised there was a question I meant to ask in the last post and didn’t. Does anyone know why so many of the Nigerian team played in the Norwegian league? Are they all following in a player’s footsteps (a la the Fijian rugby league players of Rochdale)? Or is it something else?

While the results of the second round have mostly gone to form (except Japan vs the Netherlands), I am starting to think Brazil enjoy making the Argentine men’s team look good at this knock out football thing. How can you be so good and still not win stuff?!

On to the diagrams:

Network diagram showing the links between the quarter final teams

The national team closest to the centre is England, and Manchester City are probably the club team closest but it’s hard to tell because of the way the teams are spread. The losses of Canada, Australia and Japan mean that the US is pretty much on it’s own with a heavy counterweight of European teams.

The club teams with the most players left in are Lyon (11), Bayern (10) and Chelsea (9). Barcelona lost most of its players when Spain lost.

The community view is less interesting because each country is its own community.

Same image as before, coloured by community

There seems to be far less overlap than there normally is in the men’s game and I don’t know if that’s because no “dominant” league has yet established itself. In the men’s you’d expect most of the finalists to play in one of the big 5 European leagues (Spain, England, Italy, Germany, France, and you can make the argument it’s really a big 2 of Spain and England), but that doesn’t seem to be the case here. Yet. Professional leagues still being a relatively recent thing in women’s football, and it will be interesting to see if this changes in the future.

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Women’s World Cup 2019 Last 16 Network Diagram

Network diagram showing the links between teams in the last 16

Spain are the national team closest to the middle, with Barcelona the club team nearest. Barcelona also has the most players left in the competition with 15, followed by Lyon on 13 and Bayern Munich on 10.

Despite the large number of unattached players playing for teams in the group stages, only 1 unattached player is left in, Gaƫlle Enganamouit of Cameroon. This may suggest that those teams who fielded unattached players may have had less player depth and had to use them.

After the knocked out teams have been removed, the out-lying teams are now Japan, China and Italy.

All of the teams I classified as “made of players from lots of clubs” are out, which might make it an interesting prognostic factor in future. Only one of the “players few from few clubs” teams is out, and that was Thailand, who were an oddity in that group because the national team manager set up a club for them so they could get paid.

If we look at the community view
Same image as before coloured by community

The US and Australia are still one community, every one else is their own community. This would obviously have happened in the case of England and Scotland as Scotland were knocked out but I am not sure why Sweden and Nigeria are no longer together as one community when they were before.

Women’s World Cup 2019 Network Diagram

I had hoped to make a diagram like this for the Women’s Rugby League World Cup in 2017, but I couldn’t get enough information about which club team the players played for to make one.

I also wanted to have this ready for the start of the World Cup, but real life happened.

Without further ado, here is the team network diagram for the 2019 Women’s World Cup.

Unlabelled version – Network diagram of the teams at the Women's World Cup

Labelled version – Labelled version of the same diagram

I wanted to use both versions because the sheer overlap of some of the teams makes it hard to pick out the individual teams (looking at you so much United States and Canada).

Canada is the national team closest to the centre, while the Texas Longhorns are the club team closest to the centre.

The club team with the highest number of players involved is Barcelona, with 15 players, followed by Lyon on 14 and Chelsea and Manchester City with 12.

There are a lot more players who are down as unattached than I would expect, there’s a full 11 player. They’re not quite a full team because that 11 includes 2 goalkeepers but only 1 defender.

Jamaica are the only team where no-one plays in their national league, the US are the only team where everyone does. Interestingly, all the players for Sweden and the US play for club teams that have at least one other player from a different country also playing for them.

England and Scotland are a lot closer than I think the men’s team equivalents would be, possibly because a lot more Scottish women play in the English league than Scottish men do.

The national teams seem to be divided into those teams where most players play for a couple of club teams and those where their players play for many different club teams. It’s hard to see in the teams in the middle, but clear for those around the outside. I think Italy and Jamaica are probably the clearest example.
Figure showing Italy has players from very few teams while Jamaica has players from many

National teams with players from few clubs include Italy, Germany, Thailand, China and South Korea. Teams with players from many clubs include Argentina, South Africa, Chile, Jamaica and New Zealand. I have no idea if it means anything.

In the men’s World Cup, teams further away from the centre are more likely to go out early. If this is also true in the women’s, then it doesn’t look good for Thailand, South Africa, China and Japan. Because I know Japan are a strong team, I suspect they will be fine.

Community view of the diagram

As far as football is concerned, Australia is the 51st state. This is because a lot of the Australian players who play for non-Australian teams play for US teams that also have players on the US national team.

Also grouped together are England and Scotland (because lots of Scottish players play in England) and Sweden and Nigeria (because lots of Nigerian players play in Sweden).

Because they have players who play for the same teams and because they’re away from other teams, I was expecting Chile and Argentina to be grouped together but they’re not. I was also expecting Norway to be in the Nigeria/Sweden group, but they are not. This might be because Norway also has links to the Netherlands.

Further updates to come as the tournament progresses.