The 2015 FIFA Women's World Cup finals were held in Canada, with the number of qualifiers increased from 16 to 24, including eight from Europe.
Games were played from 6 June to 5 July 2015, with matches in Edmonton, Moncton, Montreal, Ottowa and Vancouver. The United States beat Japan in the final with England defeating Germany for bronze.
With England ineligible, Germany and quarter-finalists France qualified for the 2016 Olympic tournament in Brazil. The four European teams eliminated in the last 16, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden and Switzerland, will compete in a mini-tournament to decided UEFA's third birth.
Past World Cup finals (European teams in bold)
2015: United States 5-2 Japan; Vancouver, Canada
2011: Japan 2-2 United States (aet, 3-1 pens); Frankfurt, Germany
2007: Germany 2-0 Brazil; Shanghai, China
2003: Germany 1-0 Sweden (aet, golden goal); Carson, United States
1999: United States 0-0 China (aet, 5-4 pens); Pasadena, United States
1995: Norway 2-0 Germany; Stockholm, Sweden
1991: United States 2-1 Norway; Guangzhou, China
Past Olympic medallists (European teams in bold)
2012: United States (gold), Japan (silver), Canada (bronze); London, United Kingdom
2008: United States (gold), Brazil (silver), Germany (bronze); Beijing, China
2004: United States (gold), Brazil (silver), Germany (bronze); Athens, Greece
2000: Norway (gold), United States (silver), Germany (bronze); Sydney, Australia
1996: United States (gold), China (silver), Norway (bronze); Atlanta, United States
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European qualifying for the 2015 FIFA Women's World Cup comprises two group stages and a play-off round.
The eight lower-ranked nations are drawn into two four-team mini-tournaments played from 4 to 9 April 2013. Each mini-tournament is staged by one of the countries and each team plays one another once with the group winners and runners-up progressing.
Those four teams join the remaining 38 entrants in seven groups of six nations drawn on 16 April 2013 and played from 20/21 September 2013 to 17 September 2014 on a home-and-away basis. The seven group winners qualify for the finals. The four runners-up with the best record against the sides first, third, fourth and fifth in their groups go into the play-offs for the remaining UEFA berth in Canada.
The two contenders with the best coefficient will be drawn against the other two teams in the first round, played over two legs on 25/26 and 29/30 October 2014. The two winners then meet on 22/23 and 26/27 November 2014 to decide the final qualifiers.
Twenty-four teams, including the eight European qualifiers, will compete in Canada in the summer of 2015.
Further details, including the criteria for separating teams that finish level on points in a group, or after extra time in a match, can be found in the official competition regulations.