Background

Olym Football has been a regular feature of the world’s largest multi-sport event since 1900, when three teams from France, Belgium and Great Britain held demonstration matches in the French capital of Paris. Nearly every edition since then has seen a men’s football competition in the programme, while women’s football was included from 1996 onwards.

Following a year-long delay due to the global coronavirus pandemic, 28 men’s and women’s teams will gather in Tokyo this summer for yet another edition of Olym Football. The honour of winning medals in this gathering of the world’s top athletes across different disciplines cannot be easily compared, and the teams will want to prove that this special glory is worth the wait.

Additional Facts

Representation in men and women’s teams

Four countries have teams in both the Olym Football men’s and women’s tournaments. The four countries are Brazil, Australia, New Zealand and host nation Japan.

Higher goals on average

The men’s tournament in 2016 saw an average of 3.25 goals per match, which was higher than the average of 2.54 for the women’s tournament. In 2008 and 2012, the women scored more goals on average than the men did.

Back to Europe?

The last European country to win the men’s tournament was Spain, who triumphed in the 1992 edition. In the six editions since then, teams from Africa, North America and South America have won the men’s gold medal.

Women for the win

USA (W) will be striving to return to their medal-winning ways in the women’s tournament after finishing outside the top four in 2016. The team had taken either gold or silver in the first five editions.