Homare Sawa

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"Homare" redirects here. For the World War II aircraft engine, see Nakajima Homare.
Homare Sawa
Homare Sawa in 2011.JPG
Sawa captaining Japan in the 2011 FIFA Women's World Cup
Personal information
Full name Homare Sawa
Date of birth (1978-09-06) 6 September 1978 (age 36)
Place of birth Tokyo, Japan
Height 164 cm (5 ft 5 in)[1]
Playing position Midfielder
Club information
Current team
INAC Kobe Leonessa
Number 8
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1991–1998 Yomiuri Beleza 136 (79)
1999 Denver Diamonds
2001–2003 Atlanta Beat 55 (13)
2004–2009 NTV Beleza 85 (47)
2009–2010 Washington Freedom 41 (6)
2010 NTV Beleza
2011– INAC Kobe Leonessa 33 (6)
National team
1993– Japan 196 (82)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 11 November 2012.

† Appearances (Goals).

‡ National team caps and goals correct as of 24 May 2014

Homare Sawa (澤 穂希 Sawa Homare?, born 6 September 1978) is a Japanese professional football player. She was captain of the Japan women's national football team that won gold at the 2011 FIFA Women's World Cup and led the team to the silver medal at the 2012 Summer Olympics. In 2012, she was named the 2011 FIFA Women's World Player of the Year. Sawa currently plays for INAC Kobe Leonessa in the Nadeshiko League Division 1. She previously played for the Atlanta Beat of the Women's United Soccer Association (WUSA), NTV Beleza, and the Washington Freedom of Women's Professional Soccer (WPS).

Early life[edit]

Born in Fuchū, Tokyo, Sawa began playing football when at the age of six. While watching her older brother train, his coach invited her to join the boys team on the pitch.[2]

Playing career[edit]

Club[edit]

Long considered Japan's finest female footballer, Sawa made her debut in L. League, Japan's highest domestic league, at the young age of 12.[3]

Atlanta Beat[edit]

With the birth of the Women's United Soccer Association (WUSA) in 2001, Sawa found herself playing in the highest-level professional women's league in the United States, for the Atlanta Beat. She scored the first goal in the club's history, and was a centerpiece of the Beat's three seasons in the league, helping them into the playoffs each year. Despite her diminutive stature at 5'5" (164 cm) tall and 121 lbs. (55 kg), she held her own with the mostly larger and more physical players, and was regularly among the team and league leaders in fouls taken.[citation needed]

NTV Beleza[edit]

Following the WUSA's demise in 2003, Sawa returned to Japan, where she played with powerhouse NTV Beleza. In 2004, she was named Women's Player of the Year for the Asian Football Confederation.[citation needed]

Washington Freedom[edit]

On 24 September 2008, Sawa was selected by the Washington Freedom in the first round of the 2008 WPS International Draft. She was a fixture in the Freedom midfield through the league's first two seasons before returning to Japan during preparations for the 2011 FIFA Women's World Cup.[citation needed]

International[edit]

On 6 December 1993, at age 15, Sawa made her Japanese international debut, scoring four goals in her first ever match, a win against the Philippines. She has subsequently remained a fixture for the Japanese national team, participating in the last five FIFA Women's World Cup tournaments and the 1996, 2004, 2008, and 2012 Summer Olympic Games on her way to a Japanese record 186 caps, and a Japanese female-best 81 international goals, including a hat trick in a 2011 FIFA Women's World Cup group stage match against Mexico.[m 1]

Yuki Ogimi (17) scores for Japan against the United States off a pass from Homare Sawa (10) as Kelley O'Hara (5) defends and Hope Solo (1) attempts to save.

Sawa led the Japanese national team as captain to a world championship victory at the 2011 FIFA Women's World Cup . After a 2–2 tie in front of a sellout crowd in Frankfurt, Germany (with one goal by Sawa in the 117th minute), Japan won the penalty shootout 3–1, defeating the United States to win their first ever World Cup. Sawa was also awarded the Golden Boot for being the tournament's leading scorer with five goals and the Golden Ball for being the tournament's MVP. Shortly after, she was praised by her close friend Abby Wambach of the United States national team humorously stating, "she literally scores with her eyes closed" in reference to her equalizing goal in the final against the United States.[citation needed]

On 9 January 2012, Sawa was awarded the FIFA Women's World Player of the Year in Zurich, Switzerland.[4] She announced her immediate retirement from international football in August 2012, after helping Japan win a silver medal at the 2012 London Olympics.[5]

Sawa returned to international competition[6] in 2014 to help Japan win the 2014 AFC Women's Asian Cup, scoring her 82 international goal in the process.[7]

Career statistics[edit]

Club career[edit]

As of 11 November 2012
Team Season League Domestic league Domestic playoffs Total
Apps Starts Minutes Goals Assists Apps Starts Minutes Goals Assists Apps Starts Minutes Goals Assists
Washington Freedom 2009 WPS 20 20 1800 3 0 1 1 90 0 0 21 21 1890 3 0
Total 20 20 1800 3 0 1 1 90 0 0 21 21 1890 3 0
Career total 20 20 1800 3 0 1 1 90 0 0 21 21 1890 3 0
Club Season League National Cup League Cup Total
Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
NTV Beleza 1991 13 5 -
1992 20 3 -
1993 17 5 -
1994 17 11 -
1995 18 16 -
1996 17 14 -
1997 18 14 -
1998 16 11 -
1999 0 0 -
Total 136 79 -
Denver Diamonds 1999
2000
Total
Atlanta Beat 2001 19 3 - - 19 3
2002 21 7 - - 21 7
2003 15 3 - - 15 3
Total 55 13 - - 55 13
NTV Beleza 2004 6 5 -
2005 21 16 5 3 - 26 19
2006 17 13 3 2 - 20 15
2007 20 6 4 5 2 0 26 11
2008 21 7 4 1 - 25 8
Total 85 47 2 0
Washington Freedom 2009 20 3 - - 20 3
Total 20 3 - - 20 3
NTV Beleza 2009 4 2 4 1 - 8 3
Total 4 2 4 1 - 8 3
Washington Freedom 2010 21 3 - - 21 3
Total 21 3 - - 21 3
NTV Beleza 2010 - 1 0 - 1 0
Total - 1 0 - 1 0
INAC Kobe Leonessa 2011 16 4 4 0 - 20 4
2012 17 2 3 0 4 0 24 2
2013 6 0
Total 33 6 7 0 10 0 50 6
Career total

International goals[edit]

Matches and goals scored at World Cup and Olympic tournaments[edit]

Homare Sawa competed in five FIFA Women's World Cup: Sweden 1995, USA 1999, USA 2003, China 2007 and Germany 2011; and four Olympics: Atlanta 1996, Athens 2004, Beijing 2008 and London 2012; altogether played 35 matches and scored 11 goals at those nine global tournaments.[8] Sawa with her Japan teams are the reigning World Champions that won the Germany 2011 Women's World Cup, and are the silver medalists at the 2012 London Olympics.

Honors[edit]

Club[edit]

Yomiuri/NTV Beleza

INAC Kobe Leonessa

International[edit]

Japan

Individual[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Japanese Medalists in London 2012 Olympics". joc.or.jp. Japanese Olympic Committee. Retrieved 17 January 2014. 
  2. ^ "Homare Sawa". 2012 London Olympics Committee. Retrieved 1 May 2013. 
  3. ^ "Star bio: Japan's Homare Sawa". CBC Sports. Retrieved 1 May 2013. 
  4. ^ "Japan's Homare Sawa is FIFA women's player of the year". BBC News. 9 January 2012. Retrieved 10 January 2012. 
  5. ^ "Japan's Sawa set to quit international football". Reuters. 11 August 2012. Retrieved 11 August 2012. 
  6. ^ "Lesser lights eye share of the spotlight". FIFA. 13 May 2014. Retrieved 25 May 2014. 
  7. ^ "Matildas fall short in Women's Asian Cup final". The Guardian. 25 May 2014. Retrieved 25 May 2014. 
  8. ^ "FIFA Player Statistics: Homare SAWA". FIFA. 
Match reports
  1. ^ a b "FIFA Women's World Cup: Germany 2011: MATCH Report: Japan – Mexico". FIFA. 
  2. ^ "FIFA Women's World Cup: Sweden 1995: MATCH Report: Germany – Japan". FIFA. 
  3. ^ "FIFA Women's World Cup: Sweden 1995: MATCH Report: Brazil – Japan". FIFA. 
  4. ^ "FIFA Women's World Cup: Sweden 1995: MATCH Report: Sweden – Japan". FIFA. 
  5. ^ "Women's Olympic Football Tournament Atlanta 1996: Match Report: Germany – Japan". FIFA. 
  6. ^ "Women's Olympic Football Tournament Atlanta 1996: Match Report: Brazil – Japan". FIFA. 
  7. ^ "Women's Olympic Football Tournament Atlanta 1996: Match Report: Norway – Japan". FIFA. 
  8. ^ "FIFA Women's World Cup: USA 1999: MATCH Report: Japan – Canada". FIFA. 
  9. ^ "FIFA Women's World Cup: USA 1999: MATCH Report: Japan – Russia". FIFA. 
  10. ^ "FIFA Women's World Cup: USA 1999: MATCH Report: Norway – Japan". FIFA. 
  11. ^ "FIFA Women's World Cup: USA 2003: MATCH Report: Japan – Argentina". FIFA. 
  12. ^ "FIFA Women's World Cup: USA 2003: MATCH Report: Germany – Japan". FIFA. 
  13. ^ "FIFA Women's World Cup: USA 2003: MATCH Report: Canada – Japan". FIFA. 
  14. ^ "Women's Olympic Football Tournament Athens 2004: Match Report: Sweden – Japan". FIFA. 
  15. ^ "Women's Olympic Football Tournament Athens 2004: Match Report: Japan – Nigeria". FIFA. 
  16. ^ "Women's Olympic Football Tournament Athens 2004: Match Report: USA – Japan". FIFA. 
  17. ^ "FIFA Women's World Cup: China PR 2007: MATCH Report: Japan – England". FIFA. 
  18. ^ "FIFA Women's World Cup: China PR 2007: MATCH Report: Argentina – Japan". FIFA. 
  19. ^ "FIFA Women's World Cup: China PR 2007: MATCH Report: Germany – Japan". FIFA. 
  20. ^ "Women's Olympic Football Tournament Beijing 2008: Match Report: Japan – New Zealand". FIFA. 
  21. ^ "Women's Olympic Football Tournament Beijing 2008: Match Report: USA – Japan". FIFA. 
  22. ^ "Women's Olympic Football Tournament Beijing 2008: Match Report: Norway – Japan". FIFA. 
  23. ^ "Women's Olympic Football Tournament Beijing 2008: Match Report: China PR – Japan". FIFA. 
  24. ^ "Women's Olympic Football Tournament Beijing 2008: Match Report: Japan – USA". FIFA. 
  25. ^ "Women's Olympic Football Tournament Beijing 2008: Match Report: Germany – Japan". FIFA. 
  26. ^ "FIFA Women's World Cup: Germany 2011: MATCH Report: Japan – New Zealand". FIFA. 
  27. ^ "FIFA Women's World Cup: Germany 2011: MATCH Report: England – Japan". FIFA. 
  28. ^ "FIFA Women's World Cup: Germany 2011: MATCH Report: Germany – Japan". FIFA. 
  29. ^ "FIFA Women's World Cup: Germany 2011: MATCH Report: Japan – Sweden". FIFA. 
  30. ^ "FIFA Women's World Cup: Germany 2011: MATCH Report: Japan – USA". FIFA. 
  31. ^ "Women's Olympic Football Tournament London 2012: Match Report: Japan – Canada". FIFA. 
  32. ^ "Women's Olympic Football Tournament London 2012: Match Report: Japan – Sweden". FIFA. 
  33. ^ "Women's Olympic Football Tournament London 2012: Match Report: Brazil – Japan". FIFA. 
  34. ^ "Women's Olympic Football Tournament London 2012: Match Report: France – Japan". FIFA. 
  35. ^ "Women's Olympic Football Tournament London 2012: Match Report: USA – Japan". FIFA. 

External links[edit]