Early birds

By Skip Bandele [email protected]

The annual Algarve Cup, one of the top three international tournaments on the women’s football calendar, will take place a week earlier than usual this year from February 24 to March 3.

The 2009 finalists, winners Sweden and the United States, have been drawn into Group A with Norway and Iceland while Germany, China, Denmark and Iceland will fight out top spot in Group B.

A third group featuring Portugal among four lesser ranked countries does traditionally not produce one of the two teams destined for the Euro’2004 stadium title showdown, but nevertheless provides for great entertainment. Group as well as placing games will be played anywhere from Vila Real de Santo António to Lagos throughout that week- watch this space for details.