NEW YORK / LOUISVILLE / CALI, COLOMBIA (Tuesday, Jan. 16, 2024) – NJ/NY Gotham FC and Racing Louisville today announced that for the first time in National Women’s Soccer League history, two clubs will participate in The Women’s Cup Colombia – a four-team international tournament in South America that will pit Colombian powerhouses América de Cali and Deportivo Cali against a pair of NWSL opponents.
As a part of preseason preparations for the two NWSL clubs, this milestone edition of The Women’s Cup is set to kick off in late February, with a number of firsts. It will be the first time the tournament is held in South America and the first time NWSL clubs play in South America against South American teams. In addition, The Women’s Cup Colombia will be the first of four tournaments to be played in 2024, as part of the TWC Global Series. Summer events in the United States and Europe will be announced in the coming weeks.
“The Women’s Cup Colombia provides an invaluable competitive opportunity for us to face high-level opponents in true game scenarios,” said Gotham FC General Manager and Head of Soccer Operations Yael Averbuch West. “As we fine-tune our chemistry heading into the regular season, we look forward to meeting new opposition in addition to exposing both the players and the club brand to new audiences and experiences.”
The tournament begins on Tuesday, Feb. 27, with kickoff for the first semifinal match, featuring Gotham vs. Deportivo Cali at 5 p.m. ET, before the second semifinal between América de Cali and Racing Louisville kicks off at 8 p.m. ET.
The next stage is set for Friday, March 2, when the winners of the two semifinal matches advance to face off in the tournament final at 8:30 p.m. ET. The two remaining sides will compete in a third-place match at 5:30 p.m. ET prior to the final.
Tickets for the two days of the competition are on sale now at TheWomensCup.world.
“We are incredibly excited to make history this year with The Women’s Cup in Cali,” said J.P. Reynal, President and CEO of The Women’s Cup. “This is a fantastic opportunity to help continue to grow women’s football globally and in South America while providing fans the chance to see some of the best players in the world sharing a pitch. We learned from the FIFA Women’s World Cup that Colombia can be among the best in the world in women’s football, and we can’t wait to see how two of Colombia’s best pair up against teams from the strongest women’s league in the world.”
This February edition of The Women’s Cup seeks to build off the excitement from the previous three editions of the event, which were held in the U.S. and Spain. Racing won the first tournament on its home field in 2021, while Seattle-based OL Reign claimed the trophy in 2022 in Louisville. This past year, Atlético Madrid won the first iteration of The Women’s Cup played in Europe.
TWC Colombia will be staged as the Liga Femenina Profesional season gets underway, with América de Cali hoping to win its third league trophy and Deportivo Cali pursuing its second. The NWSL kicks off its season on March 16.
Fresh off winning the NWSL Championship, Gotham FC boldly announced that four of the most sought-after U.S. Women’s National Team players had recently signed contracts to join Gotham FC through 2026. The new signings include FIFA Women’s World Cup Champions and Olympians Crystal Dunn, Tierna Davidson, Rose Lavelle, and Emily Sonnett on a squad that already features fellow USWNT stars Midge Purce and Lynn Williams, as well as World Cup-winning Spanish forward Esther Gonzalez.
Racing Louisville features U.S. Women’s National Team midfielder Savannah DeMelo and Brazilian star Ary Borges as well as Nigeria national team standout Uchenna Kanu, legendary New Zealand defender Abby Erceg and USWNT-capped veterans Jaelin Howell and Carson Pickett. Racing reached its first NWSL cup final in 2023, finishing as the runner-up in the Challenge Cup.
América de Cali features four members from Colombia’s history-making 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup squad, including Diana Ospina, Daniela Arias and Natalia Giraldo. América was the South American club with the most players participating in the recent WWC. The club won the league in 2019 and again in 2022 and has three top-three finishes in the Copa Libertadores Femenina over the last four years.
Deportivo Cali won Colombia’s top-tier league in 2021 and finished second in 2022. Colombian superstar Linda Caicedo, who signed with Spanish giant Real Madrid after the World Cup, was a breakout player at Deportivo before her star turn on the global stage last summer.
The host venue, Estadio Olímpico Pascual Guerrero, has a capacity of 38,000 and is home to three Colombian professional men’s and women’s football clubs. The famous stadium is 87 years old and has hosted a FIFA U-20 World Cup, two Copa Americas and the Pan American Games.
Visit TheWomensCup.world for more information and tickets.
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