After just under a month of exciting action, the 2023 Women’s World Cup final is upon us.
This summer witnessed the biggest-ever Women’s World Cup. A total of 32 teams took part, and now we are down to the final two. The United States were the defending champions, looking to claim what would have been a record third World Cup trophy in a row and fifth overall.
However, their defence ended in the last 16, with Vlatko Andonovski’s side knocked out on penalties by Sweden. In fact, there will be a completely new name on the trophy this summer with former winners Germany, Norway and Japan all eliminated; Germany didn’t even make it out of the group stages.
Also falling in the groups stages were the likes of Canada and Brazil, while France were knocked out in the quarter-finals. The final four teams were Spain, Sweden, England and co-hosts Australia, with only Sweden having reached the final before.
But there would be no second final for Sweden as they lost to Spain, while England beat Australia. So, who will win the World Cup? Spain, or England?
Below you will find the latest World Cup outright odds for 2023, and a look at the finalists.
The latest Women’s World Cup outright odds for 2023
*Odds correct as of 14:15 on August 17
Who will win the 2023 Women’s World Cup?
Spain have been an interesting prospect over the past nine months, having had to do without 15 major players after they went on strike following unhappiness with the RFEF and manager Jorge Vilda. Last year reports emerged that Vilda was extra strict with his teams in camps, allegedly not allowing players to close their hotel room doors until he had checked in on them for the night. Vilda is also the son of the head of the women’s department at the RFEF, bringing nepotism claims and fears that he would be untouchable.
However, all but three made themselves available for selection ahead of the World Cup, including Barcelona midfielder Aitana Bonmati. And that makes things tricky.
Alexia Putellas is also back in the fold after injury made her miss Euro 2022 and after being slowly bedded back in, she appears to have fought her way back into the starting XI. But this summer it has been mostly about Bonmati as she chases the Ballon d’Or, having also been a big part of Barcelona winning the Liga F and Champions League Double.
From the start, Spain looked impressive with a 3-0 win over Costa Rica, and they built on that with a 5-0 victory against Zambia, which had some already tipping them to go far. But expectations were tempered slightly as Spain were brought back down to earth with a bang, losing 4-0 to Japan which dropped them to second – albeit having already secured qualification to the last 16.
Finishing second actually gave Spain the slightly more favourable last 16 tie, as they thrashed Switzerland 5-1 and then beat shock Group E winners Netherlands after extra-time in the quarter-finals. In the semi-final, many expected a replay against Japan but Sweden were the actual opponents, and Spain won it with a very late showing. They’re now just one step away.
Just over a year ago, England were celebrating their first ever major trophy win, having beaten Germany 2-1 in the European Championships final at Wembley. It capped off what had been a fantastic first year under Sarina Wiegman and immediately saw England climb up the list of favourites, though there were a few wobbles along the way.
Although England won the first ever Women’s Finalissima in April, they needed penalties to beat Brazil after an unconvincing performance. And just a few days later, they lost for the first time under Wiegman, having gone unbeaten in their first 30 matches. Add that to all of their injury issues, and England’s chances looked a little bit longer.
England opened the tournament with more unconvincing performances but still managed to beat Haiti and Denmark, the former via a retaken penalty and the latter with a bit of magic. The Lionesses thrashed China 6-1 to complete a perfect group stage and there were some signs of England finally arriving.
But there was another unconvincing victory in the last 16. An undeserved one, in fact, as England were outplayed by Nigeria, only to scrape through on penalties. In the quarter-finals, Colombia were the opponents and gave England a match, taking the lead through Leicy Santos, but Lauren Hemp and Alessio Russo turned things round for the Lionesses.
That duo came up trumps again for England in the semi-finals, with the Lionesses beating hosts Australia 3-1. Like Spain, it’s a first-ever World Cup final for England and a chance for history.
Previous Women’s World Cup 2023 winners