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31.05.2007 Sports News

Golden Damsels Win FIFA Trophy

Africa swept the honours in the maiden FIFA Under-14 Seven-Aside exhibition tournament played in Zurich last Tuesday.

Ghana's Under-14 female team after showing off their flair led Africa's charge to win the "Home of FIFA" Trophy in the FIFA U-14 International Tournament for girls while South Africa also picked up gold in the boys division.

The maiden tourney was played on the brand new FIFA Football Turf next door to the beautiful new home of the world's governing body for football inaugurated last Tuesday.

Ghana's team, the Golden Damsels, made sure that some 1,300 association delegates and guests attending the FIFA Congress who had braced through persistent rain and temperatures overnight managed to catch a glimpse of their exciting blend of football.

The Golden Damsels team, coached by experienced manager, Francis Oti Akenten, brushed aside host nation, Switzerland, in the opening game winning 1-0 and increased their scoring rate after dispatching Tahiti 4-0 in the second match of the six-team competition played within 20 minutes of regulation time.

The Golden Damsels after that high scoring win booked their place for the finals where they came up tops, courtesy a 3-2 win over Costa Rica on penalties after drawing goalless in regulation time.

Chile and Thailand are the other teams that participated in the girls competition.

The games were part of the festivities that marked the inauguration of the new Home of FIFA in Zurich.

"Young people are the future of our sport and it is only fitting to stage such a competition on the day that we open the doors of the Home of FIFA to the world," said FIFA President Joseph S. Blatter.

"I am delighted that FIFA was able to host such an important tournament and I have no doubt that it was an unforgettable experience for the girls and boys. No matter the results, the most important thing was that they enjoyed this opportunity to meet new friends from all over the globe who share a passion for the beautiful game."

Boys and girls representing 12 different countries in two separate U-14 tournaments took part in the Exhibition Tournament in Zurich.