Earlier this evening the four pots for the Rio 2016 Olympics Women's Football Tournament were released by FIFA.  Following the procedure rules, we break down the six possible groups for the Matildas ahead of next week's draw.

The Pots

Hosts Brazil have been placed in Pot 1 with the other 11 nations placed in subsequent pots according to their rankings as at 25 March 2016.

Pot 1 Pot 2Pot 3Pot 4
Brazil (host)

USA (1)

Germany (2)

France (3)

Australia (5)

Sweden (6)

Canada (10)

China PR (12)

New Zealand (16)

Colombia (24)

South Africa (54)

Zimbabwe (95)

The Procedure

  • 3¬†pots representing the venues are labelled Group E, Group F and Group G.

  • Each pot, has¬†4¬†balls containing position numbers 1, 2, 3 and 4 of each respective group.

  • The draw starts with Pot 1 and ends¬†with Pot 4.

  • Each pot is completely emptied before moving on to the next pot.

  • A ball from a team pot will be drawn, followed by a ball from one of the groups, thus determining the position in which the respective team will play.

Key Rule:  No group can have more than one team from the same confederation.  

Matildas to play Germany

By virtue of their fifth ranking, the Matildas have been placed in Pot 2 alongside UEFA nations France and Sweden.

With the Key Rule in operation, it means that automatically Australia will find themselves in the same group as top UEFA seed and world no.2 Germany.

With Brazil automatically placed in Group E, what remains to be seen is which group the two nations will be drawn in; F or G.

Group F 

Group F would see their first two matches in São Paulo with a trip to either Brasilia or Salvador for the final group match.  A trip to Brasilia would mean an 1hr and 45 min flight while the trip to Salvador means a 2hr and 20 min flight.

The disadvantage of Group F is the cross over in the knockout stage.

The winner of Group F will meet runner-up from Group G instead of a third placed team that would meet the Group E and G winners.  The runner up in Group F would meet the runner up from Group E.

Group G

Drawing Group G would mean Australia's opening group matches would be in Belo Horizonte with the options of Manaus or Salvador in the third group match.  The 3hr and 40 minute flight from Belo Horizonte to Manaus (on the edge of the Amazon) is the big disadvantage for Group G.

However, the distinct advantage for Group G is the winner facing that third placed team from Group E / F.

Moving Parts

With Germany as an opponent all but guaranteed, the rest of the group make up is a little more fluid.

The Key Rule in force, with confederation mate China in Pot 3, Australia is left with Canada and New Zealand as the possible third group member.

As the Key Rule prevents Canada from being in the same group as the USA, that leaves a Brazil's group or the GER/AUS group as their options meaning a slightly higher probability Canada will end up in the GER/AUS group. New Zealand on the other hand has the option of all three groups.

Pot 4 is wide open for Australia with all three teams eligible to join the GER/AUS group.  In essence, there are six possible groups combinations for Australia.

Scenario 1Scenario 2Scenario 3
Germany (2)

Australia (5)

Canada (10)

Colombia (24)

Ave Ranking: 10.25

Germany (2)

Australia (5)

New Zealand (16)

Colombia (24)

Ave Ranking: 11.75

Germany (2)

Australia (5)

Canada (10)

South Africa (54)

Ave Ranking: 20.25

Scenario 4Scenario 5Scenario 6
Germany (2)

Australia (5)

New Zealand (16)

South Africa (54)

Ave Ranking: 19.25

Germany (2)

Australia (5)

Canada (10)

Zimbabwe (95)

Ave Ranking: 28

Germany (2)

Australia (5)

New Zealand (16)

Zimbabwe (95)

Ave Ranking: 29.5

The draw will be held on 14 April 2016 at the Maracana with a scheduled start time of 10.30 local time (11.30pm AET).