Wednesday 19 July 2023, 08:30

Technical Study Group eye new trends at Australia & New Zealand 2023

With an increase to 32 nations and co-hosts for the first time, the 2023 edition of the FIFA Women’s World Cup™ is set to break new ground in many ways. Equally expectations are high that the on-field action will set a new benchmark and the FIFA Technical Study Group (TSG) will be on hand to provide expert analysis of developments on the pitch. The TSG for Australia & New Zealand 2023 comprises an expanded panel of 12 experts whose analysis of the 64 matches will detail a comprehensive breakdown of the technical, tactical and physical action, as well as the identification of potential trends. Led by two-time FIFA Women’s World Cup-winning coach Jill Ellis, the panel features representatives from all six confederations and boasting a diverse list of credentials. Before commencing the process of relocation to the nine Host Cities, members of the TSG performed media duties in Sydney/Gadigal on Wednesday.

The expected new developments and recent rapid growth of women’s football was a theme among TSG members. “I think from a technical perspective, the game is moving so quickly, so we’re seeing new trends [and] we are seeing tactical trends,” said Gemma Grainger, head coach of the Wales women’s senior national team. “We’ve seen it from the Qatar [FIFA] World Cup and I think this [FIFA Women’s] World Cup will be no different. We’re going to see how the game has progressed. We’re going to see new teams in the tournament as well as teams returning to the tournament. “Some of the new trends… I think [one of] the biggest things we’ve seen are the changes in teams’ formations. So, from a tactical perspective, how teams are changing from first half in game and second half formations. So, for me, I’m looking forward to seeing which teams can utilise that and really make decisions at key times to be successful.”

Former long-serving Brazil international Aline Pellegrino said the key to success had changed in recent editions of the tournament. “I think that from 2007 to now, the tactical part was where it has evolved the most,” she said. “I think in 2007 it was a very physical game. The teams that stood out the most physically had the greatest chance of winning. “I think the teams have studied a lot to put forward new tactical and technical variations to be able to end up champions. This is one of the things that the Technical Study Group will do, to then be able to bring it to the world – what tactical variations are there and what has evolved.”

Former Côte d’Ivoire international and current head coach Clementine Toure said the level of analysis and the feedback provided to all Member Associations via the post-tournament technical report is important for the ongoing development of women’s football. “When you look at football, whether it’s individual analysis, whether it’s unit analysis, whether it’s team analysis, FIFA are producing some of the most detailed work I’ve ever seen as a coach,” she said. “So, to be able to look into that detail, to be able to really delve into areas gives teams an opportunity that maybe they haven’t had before. There are possibly some countries that don’t have the resources to look into the details that we’re looking into, so I think it’ll really supports some of those countries.”