By John Rei Salanga

The Philippine national women’s football team are slated to debut in the FIFA Women’s World Cup as they are fixed into Group A during the 2023 draw ceremony held in Aotea Center in Auckland, New Zealand, on Saturday.

Photo Courtesy of FIFA

After a FIFA berth-clinching victory over Chinese Taipei in the 2022 AFC Women’s Asian Cup, the Filipinas were drawn in the group stage alongside Norway, Switzerland, and co-host New Zealand.

In its world cup debut, the Philippines will face world No. 21 Switzerland, whose last world appearance was in the Canadian FIFA, on July 21 in Dunedin, New Zealand.

Meanwhile, the 53rd-ranking Filipinas will be toiling with the 1995 champions and world No. 12 Norwegian booters, who are statistically the best team to beat in Group A, on July 25 in Wellington.

More so, the Filipina kickers are gearing towards a redemption arc after a 1-2 loss to the home-playing Kiwis in a friendly match last month in California, USA as they go through a sequel battle in the world stage on July 30 in Auckland.

The Filipino squad will have to lay hold of a top 2 spot in the group stage to advance into the knockout stage of the tournament.

The Philippines dodged a bullet from a possible matchup against two-peat defending champions USA and 2019 runners-up the Netherlands which were drawn together in a ruthless Group E alongside debuting team Vietnam and the winner of the playoffs between Cameroon, Thailand, and Portugal.

Earlier, New Zealand and Norway were officially set as the opening fixture of the 2023 edition on July 20.

This campaign marks the first-ever Philippine team, men’s or women’s, to snatch a slot in the FIFA World Cup in history.

FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023 Draw Results

Group A
A1 New Zealand
A2 Norway
A3 Philippines
A4 Switzerland

Group B
B1 Australia
B2 Ireland
B3 Nigeria
B4 Canada

Group C
C1 Spain
C2 Costa Rica
C3 Zambia
C4 Japan

Group D
D1 England
D2 Group B Playoff Winner (Chile, Haiti, Senegal)
D3 Denmark
D4 China 

Group E
E2 Vietnam 
E3 Netherlands 
E4 Group A Playoff Winner (Cameroon, Thailand, Portugal)

Group F
F1 France
F2 Jamaica
F3 Brazil
F4 Group C Playoff winner (Chinese Taipei, Paraguay, Papua New Guinea, Panama)

Group G
G1 Sweden
G2 South Africa 
G3 Italy 
G4 Argentina

Group H
H1 Germany
H2 Morocco
H3 Columbia 
H4 Korea Republic

Edited by Quian Vencel Galut