The national women's team for Japan has won FIFA Football World Cup 2011 in Germany.
They beat two times champions USA in a penalty shoot out after finishing playing time with scores tied at 2-2.
USA took the lead twice in the game, but Japan showed great mental strength by equalising each time their opposition put the ball into the back of the net. Scoring was opened by the USA in the 69th minute by Alex Morgan, but Japan pulled level again through Aya Miyama in the 80th minute. The game headed into extra time, and it was the USA again that got the lead again, courtesy of Abby Wambach. The game was not over though, as Homare Sawa tied points not too long after.
Japan went through to win 3-1 on penalties, with the Japanese keeper saving two shots by the USA, who also sent another flying over the crossbar. With that, Japan proudly recorded their first ever World Cup, to inspire their disaster hit home country.
Japan had a tough tournament, having to get through the previous world champions and favorites Germany in the quarter finals, before facing another heavy weight, USA, in the finals.
Their intelligent passing, wonderful technique, and strong team bond caused many to draw comparisons with the male club team of Barcelona, which is praised as the best team of at least the past decade, and possibly of all time. Only praise can be heard of how the Japanese team has played, and opinions are that they are well deserving of their newly acquired title.
Japan also won the Fair Play Award, while Homare Sawa won the MVP of the tournament as well as achieving the Top Scorer Award.
Penalties (Japanese Commentary)