23 September 2019 – Held in Milan on Sunday, 22 September 2019, the inaugural FIFA Football Conference analysing the FIFA Women’s World Cup™ was a complete success, with participants enjoying some fascinating presentations and discussions and exhaustive analysis of France 2019.

Neil Tovey, Technical Director of the South African Football Association (SAFA), as well as Banyana Banyana head coach Desiree Ellis, attended the event held in Milan, Italy.

Ellis presented a paper on Coaching Points: Experience at and around France 2019.

Over 100 members of all the Confederations were also in attendance.

These included FIFA Women’s World Cup-winning coach Jill Ellis – who presented her view on the USA’s road to glory during the “Tribute to the World Champions.”

South Africa’s Carol Tshabalala was the Moderator in some of the sessions.

Seen at the event were FIFA Women’s World Cup finalist coach Sarina Wiegman, Sweden’s Peter Gerhardsson, England’s Phil Neville, France’s Corinne Diacre, Italy’s Milena Bertolini, Germany’s Martina Voss-Tecklenburg, Norway’s Martin Sjögren, Australia’s Ante Milicic, Canada’s Kenneth Heiner-Møller, China’s Jia Xiuquan, Japan’s Asako Takakura, Spain’s Jorge Vilda, Cameroon’s Alain Djeumfa, Argentina’s Carlos Borrello, Brazil’s newly appointed manager Pia Sundhage as well as women’s football experts from all six confederations.

Other topics that were discussed included Goalkeeping, Performance Analyis and Insights, Preparations/Pathway to Success and Refereeing.

Here are just some of the day’s most notable comments:

“The conference is very important because it shows that women’s football is really growing. It was a great World Cup in terms of the standard of play, the interest it generated and the fans. Being here helps us to analyse an event like that.”

Milena Bertolini, Italy coach

“It was really interesting, especially the statistical part, which backed up the analysis we ourselves had done on the areas where we needed to improve, which are areas where everyone else is improving. It helps us understand that we have to do it faster than everyone else.”

Phil Neville, England coach

FIFA Technical Study Group: FIFA Women’s World Cup France 2019™ Technical Report

“We were very honoured to take part. We’re a small country so being here at events like this is really important in helping us improve women’s football in our country.”

Dominique Wacalie, New Caledonia director of football

“It was hugely important because everyone that’s here experienced the World Cup from close up, with their confederations and associations. It was the best one ever and to be able to share that experience at this event is just fantastic.”

Aline Pellegrino, former Brazil international

“I think this is a great way to round off the World Cup, and having all this information to hand just gets you thinking about the next one. It was an honour for me to share my analysis and thoughts. You can learn an awful lot from your colleagues and I hope I’ve done my bit by sharing information about our journey in France.”

Jill Ellis, USA coach

“I loved it. Just looking around me and seeing all these people here is amazing in itself. I played my first World Cup in 1991 and there was nowhere near this amount of interest! Now we’ve got data, analysis, information and some very qualified people explaining the next steps for women’s football.”

Pia Sundhage, Brazil coach

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