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U.S. women learn Olympic soccer group opponents

Carli Lloyd, Alex Morgan

The United States’ Carli Lloyd (10) celebrates a goal with teammate Alex Morgan, right, during the first half in a women’s international friendly soccer game against Ireland Saturday, Jan. 23, 2016, in San Diego. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull)


The U.S. women’s soccer team will face France, New Zealand and Colombia in group play at the Rio Olympics as it attempts to win a fourth straight title.

The men’s and women’s draws were announced Thursday.

In the women’s tournament that starts Aug. 3, the top two nations from each of the three groups, plus the top two third-place teams, advance to the quarterfinals.

The U.S. women will be heavily favored to advance out of their group, with world No. 3 France the biggest challenge.

At London 2012, the U.S. overcame a 2-0 deficit to beat France 4-2 in the group stage.

If the U.S. and host Brazil win their groups and their quarterfinals, they will meet in the semifinals Aug. 16 in Rio de Janeiro.

In the men’s draw, defending Olympic champion Mexico was grouped with Germany, South Korea and Fiji. Host Brazil is with Denmark, Iraq and South Africa.

The top two nations from each of the four men’s groups advance to quarterfinals.

Olympic men’s soccer rosters can include no more than three players born before Jan. 1, 1993.

All of the Rio 2016 groups:

Group A -- Brazil, Denmark, Iraq, South Africa
Group B -- Colombia, Japan, Nigeria, Sweden
Group C -- Fiji, Germany, Mexico, South Korea
Group D -- Algeria, Argentina, Honduras, Portugal

Women (FIFA rank)
Group E -- Brazil (8), Sweden (6), China (12), South Africa (54)
Group F -- Germany (2), Australia (5), Canada (10), Zimbabwe (95)
Group G -- U.S. (1), France (3), New Zealand (16), Colombia (24)

U.S. Schedule
Aug. 3 -- New Zealand at Belo Horizonte
Aug. 6 -- France at Belo Horizonte
Aug. 9 -- Colombia at Manaus

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