POSTED: August 27th 2012

Tokyo 2020: Iconic 1964 Olympics legacy venue hosts FIFA U-20 Womens World Cup Japan 2012

Crowd spirit is high after Japan won the FIFA Women World Cup 2011 and took silver at London 2012 / Tokyo 2020/Photo Kishimoto
Crowd spirit is high after Japan won the FIFA Women World Cup 2011 and took silver at London 2012 / Tokyo 2020/Photo Kishimoto

LAURA WALDEN / Sports Features Communications

August 27 – The Kasumigaoka National Stadium which was the focal point of the Tokyo 1964 Games is now hosting the FIFA U-20 Women's World Cup Japan 2012 kicking off a 21 day nationwide event. The country once again has the chance to prove its organizational expertise and capacity for hosting elite international sports events.

The final and runner-up matches are set to be played at Kasumigaoka also which is the site of the proposed Olympic Stadium for the Tokyo 2020 bid campaign. The venue features a state-of-the-art construction including the Olympic Games' first retractable roof and currently an international contest by the Japan Sport Council is going on soliciting entries for the final design.

International Olympic committee (IOC) member and head of the bid and the Japanese Olympic Committee, Tsunekazu Takeda, said, "The Kasumigaoka National Stadium site is a symbol of Japan's commitment to maintain the legacy of the 1964 Olympic Games.

Crowd appeal is expected to be high after the Japan national women's football team won both the 2011 FIFA Women World Cup (TM) and the London 2012 Olympic Games silver medal. Last week Tokyo was besieged by half a million people coming out to greet the 71 London 2012 medallists during their victory parade.

“We are delighted women's football is gaining popularity both domestically and internationally, and believe this is great for international sport. The FIFA U-20 Women's World Cup Japan 2012 is showcasing Tokyo's amazing ability to host world-class events, and we are fully leveraging these same skills and know-how in our bid to host the world in 2020," added Takeda.

Kasumigaoka stadium has been home to a number of events over the past fifty years since the '64 Games, and after the events got off to a good start on August 19th group-stage matches will be held in the cities of Kobe, Hiroshima, Saitama and Miyagi.

Miyagi was hard hit with the earthquake and tsunami last year and is demonstrating its comeback ability by hosting the football event.

Japan is set to host three major FIFA events over the upcoming year, apart from the U-20 competition, two FIFA Club World Cups will take place with the next one in December.

Tokyo is competing against Madrid and Istanbul to host the 2020 summer Games. The final vote will take place in Buenos Aires, Argentina next September 7, 2013 at the IOC session.

Keywords · Tokyo 2020 · FIFA U 20 · football · Kasumigaoka · soccer · Olympic bidding

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