Host City: Sydney, Australia
Venue(s): Bruce Stadium, Canberra, Australian Capital Territory; Melbourne Cricket Ground, Melbourne, Victoria; Sydney Football Stadium, Sydney, New South Wales
Date Started: September 13, 2000
Date Finished: September 28, 2000
Format: Round-robin pools advance teams to single-elimination tournament of four teams.
As in 1996, seven of the quarter-finalists of the last World Cup were qualified for Sydney, which meant that the 1996 finalists - the United States and China - were drawn in the same pool with perennial stronghold Norway. The US, reigning World Champions, came out on top, with Norway also qualifying for the semis. The Scandinavians encountered Germany, and only won the match after a late own goal by Tina Wunderlich. The American squad dealt with the Brazilians, meaning the Americans and Norway would meet for the second time in the tournament. The Americans had won the first encounter 2-0, and scored early in the second game. [Espeseth] and Gulbrandsen then pulled Norway into the lead, only to see [Tiffeny Milbrett] score in the dying seconds of the match. As in their semi-final encounter in 1996, the match went into sudden death overtime. After 12 minutes, a pass by [Hege Riise] bounced off the arm of [Dagny Mellgren], who then picked up the ball and scored the golden goal. The Americans protested the hands ball, but Canadian referee Sonia Denoncourt ruled it unintentional and hence legal.