Women’s World Cup Opens Sunday on ESPN/ESPN2

US WNTThis will be the sixth Women’s World Cup that FIFA has staged since the inaugural tournament back in 1991.

ESPN will be broadcasting games, beginning Sunday:
NIGERIA-FRANCE (live) 7:45 am on ESPN2
GERMANY-CANADA (live) 10:30 am on ESPN

MONDAY, June 27
JAPAN-NEW ZEALAND (live) 7:45 am on ESPN
MEXICO-ENGLAND (live) 10:45 am on ESPN

You can download the Women’s World Cup TV Schedule, 2011 and import it into your calendar using the Comma Delimited setting in Outlook, Google, Yahoo or Apple.

As the Wall Street Journal notes, it’s likely the German’s to lose.

The Germans are the class of the sport, thanks to the world’s most sophisticated development program—and they might be unbeatable on their home turf. “It’s just not enough to be athletic and fit anymore,” said U.S. midfielder Carli Lloyd, who scored the gold-medal winning goal in the 2008 Olympics.

ESPN also offers their take on the game with 10 Reasons to Watch the Women’s World Cup:

The U.S. may be the world’s No. 1 according to the FIFA rankings, but the team suffered the indignity of being last to qualify for the World Cup as it was forced to straggle in via playoff. The squad has only occasionally impressed in recent warm-up games, appearing strangely unsyncopated as if all too aware it hasn’t won the tournament since 1999.

The US Group stage games are listed below
June 28 Korea DPR 10:45 a.m. Rudolf-Harbig Stadium; Dresden
July 2 Colombia 10:30 a.m. Rhein-Neckar-Arena; Sinsheim
July 6 Sweden 1:30 p.m. World Cup Stadium Wolfsburg; Wolfsburg
All games will be broadcast live on ESPN, ESPN3.com and Univision

There are 13 players on the U.S. roster who will be participating in their first Women’s World Cup, but eight of them represented the USA in at least one FIFA youth Women’s World Cup Tournament and five of them played in the 2008 Olympic Games. Rachel Buehler played in the 2002 and 2004 FIFA U-19 Women’s World Cups. Amy Rodriguez, Megan Rapinoe and Becky Sauerbrunn played in the 2004 U-19 event. Rodriguez also played in the 2006 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup along with Lauren Cheney, Kelley O‘Hara and Tobin Heath. Alex Morgan was one of the stars of the 2008 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup, helping the USA to the title. Heather Mitts, Buehler, Rodriguez, Cheney and Heath were a part of the USA’s 2008 Olympic gold medal team. Mitts was also on the USA’s 2004 Olympic gold medal winning side. Only back-up goalkeeper Jill Loyden, defender Ali Krieger and midfielder Lori Lindsey have never participated in a world championship at any level.