By Jim Hearson
- See here for part 1, covering the Women’s World Cup winners from 1991-2003
- See here for previous 1to11ify series
Well, howdy there partners – sure is swell to see you again! We’re mighty hyped to welcome y’all back to the second piece of this here rootin’ tootin’ 1-to-11-ifyin’ and hope you have an awesome time reading it!
Sorry – this part is somewhat dominated by USA, who are pretty good at this football malarky, so we were just trying to acclimatise you with a bit of good ol’ American razzle dazzle. Before they take over though, let’s look at the last European winners before the newest entry.
2007: Germany 2 Brazil 0
Fortunately, Germany had seen sense in 2007 compared to 2003, so much of our work is already done for us with a respectable amount of first-team numbers already on display and plugging the gaps isn’t too nausea inducing.
Ariane Hingst continues to defy convention, but there was a time when she was less of a holdout. In her first tournament in 1999, she was given 3 to wear, despite being new to the squad, so history can repeat itself here to nicely round out the German back line.
As noted previously, Kerstin Garefrekes loves that 18 shirt but unfortunately this time around, 8 is already occupied, so she’ll need to adopt 11, not just because it’s a suitable number for a wide forward, but also because we’re not going to give her 4, which would suit Simone Laudehr much better in central midfield.
2011: Japan 2 USA 2 (aet, Japan win 3-1 on penalties)
While the Americans featured in the match, they’re not our focus here, which is probably just as well, given they had their right back wearing 11 in this game. Happily, Japan went about things in a much more conventional manner.
That said, it’s not completely without its quirks, with the backline advancing in number from right to left, culminating in Aya Sameshima wearing 15 at left back. Not just because it’s the only outfield number available, but also because it retains the pattern, she’ll be wearing 5 here.
There could conceivably be some shimmying around between the positions of the Japanese midfielders and forwards, but that’s beyond our remit – all we have to do is give Ayumi Kaihori the 1 shirt and move on.
2015: USA 5 Japan 2
Sure, the rematch of the previous final was pretty disappointing for Japan, but it’s even more disappointing for us, as Ali Krieger was still sporting 11 at right-back, and this time we actually have to deal with the madness. That said, the paucity of other first-team numbers makes it easier than it could have been.
Whilst giving the rest of the defence suitable numbers is an option, that just pushes the problem up the field, so it’s probably best to take our medicine here. That means that while Meghan Klingenberg can wear 3, Julie Johnston will have to wear 2 to take it out of the mix later on.
That means that Morgan Brian and Lauren Holiday can form a 5-6 partnership in the centre of the park, while Tobin Heath can peel the 1 from her 17 to give her 7, and Megan Rapinoe can sport 8 on the other side. All that leaves is for Alex Morgan to pick 9 out of the basket – a fitting number for the USWNT’s top scoring active player.
2019: USA 2 Netherlands 0
Good news: despite Ali Krieger being in the squad – and still wearing 11 – she didn’t start in the final. Bad news: Abby Dahlkemper did, and she wore 7 at centre-back. What’s given with one hand can so easily be taken away by the other.
Once again, it’s a case of damage limitation, so Crystal Dunn can wear 2, despite being on the other side of the defence, and as Alex Morgan wore the same number 13 as in 2015, she can have the same 9 shirt here to offer a little continuity.
Unfortunately for Megan Rapinoe and Tobin Heath, we can’t do the same, as Julie Ertz is wearing 8, plus the aforementioned Sauerbrunn. Instead, Rapinoe being a left-sided forward couldn’t be more different than a right-back, so she can take the infamous 11 shirt, while fellow forward Heath and central midfielder Rose Lavelle can take the positionally appropriate (in some geographies) 10 and 6, respectively.
2023: Spain 1 England 0
We had hoped to be writing about and England win, but there can be no complaints about the result. Thankfully, 1-to-11-ifying the new world champions Spain is fairly straightforward.
A move to Liverpool surely beckons for Spain’s number 3-wearing defensive midfielder Teresa Abelleira but even that doesn’t upscuttle things too much. Centre-back Laia Codina taking 5 is logical and has the added bonus of a reverse Zamorano – giving 9 to centre-forward Salma Paralluelo is a literal reverse Zamorano.
That leaves 11 for the left-back and captain Olga Carmona, who learned after the game that her father had died. Scoring the winning goals in the semi-final and final shows her attacking prowess and there is also of course a parallel with Spain winning the men’s World Cup for the first time in 2010 as left-back Joan Capdevila wore 11 on that occasion.