The 2021 U-17 Women’s World Cup that was scheduled to be held in India has been cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic. However, India will still get to host the next edition of the tournament in 2022. Initially, the tournament was set to take place in November 2020.
The global pandemic forced FIFA to push the tournament to February and March in 2021 in India before canceling the whole event on November 17, 2020. FIFA also cancelled the U-20 Women’s World Cup that was set to take place in Costa Rica.
A statement from FIFA said, “Since the previous decision earlier this year to reschedule both tournaments to early 2021, FIFA has been consulting with all stakeholders. As a result and after careful consideration of the feedback received by the stakeholders combined with the inability to further postpone these tournaments, the FIFA-Confederations COVID-19 Working Group subsequently recommended that the 2020 editions of the two women’s youth tournaments be cancelled and that the hosting rights for the 2022 editions be offered to the countries that were due to host the 2020 editions.”
FIFA also asserted that the decision was taken after the various stakeholders decided to take a health and safety-first approach. Most of the qualifiers for the 2021 U17 Women’s World Cup were not completed and there is a long way to go from getting rid of the pandemic, so FIFA had no other choice than cancelling the event.
It must be noted that the CAF (Africa), CONCACAF (North and Central America) and CONMEBOL (South America) qualifiers had not been conducted while UEFA (Europe) cancelled their qualifiers outright earlier this year, nominating Spain, England, and Germany for the World Cup. The confederation of Oceania (OFA) did the same and nominated New Zealand as its representative in the U-17 World Cup.
The Kalinga Stadium in Bhubaneswar, Vivekananda Yuba Bharati Krirangan (VYBK) in Kolkata, Indira Gandhi Athletic Stadium in Guwahati, EKA Arena in Ahmedabad, and the DY Patil Stadium in Navi Mumbai were set to host the games during the World Cup.