2012 London Summer Olympics

2012 Summer Olympics - The Results (Football - Men)

Football at the 2012 London Summer Games



Host City: London, Great Britain
Date Started: July 25, 2012
Date Finished: August 11, 2012
Events: 2

Participants: 467 (267 men and 200 women) from 24 countries
Youngest Participant: CMR Raissa Feudjio (16 years, 271 days)
Oldest Participant: NZL Jenny Bindon (39 years, 151 days)
Most Medals (Athlete): 105 athletes with 1 medal
Most Medals (Country): 6 countries with 1 medal


As usual, the football events were held in various sites spread over the organizing nation. The new Wembley Stadium, built on the site of the demolished venue of the 1948 Olympics, hosted the finals. Well-known sites were picked for the other matches: Millennium Stadium in Cardiff (Wales), Hampden Park in Glasgow (Scotland), Old Trafford in Manchester, St. James' Park in Newcastle and the Ricoh Arena in Coventry (renamed City of Coventry Stadium to avoid the sponsor name). No changes were made to the format, which allowed 16 men's and 12 women's teams. As in previous Olympics, male players had to be 23-years-old or younger, with the exception of three team members.

Notable was the presence of two British teams. In all other contemporary football competitions, the four "home nations" (England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland) play independently, and the last time a British team had competed at the Olympics was 1960. It had failed to qualify from 1964 through 1972, and had not entered qualification since in 1976.

The association football tournament at the 2012 Summer Olympics was held from 25 July to 11 August, and was the only sport to begin before the official opening day of the Olympic Games, two days before the opening ceremony. It was also the only sport to be held at multiple venues outside London (the host city of the Olympics), with Manchester, Glasgow, Newcastle, Coventry and Cardiff all hosting matches. The finals were played at Wembley Stadium. Associations affiliated with FIFA were invited to send their senior women's and men's under-23 national teams to participate; men's teams were allowed to augment their squads with three players over the age of 23. Five hundred and four football players competed for two sets of gold medals.

For these games, the men competed in a 16-team tournament and the women in a 12-team tournament. The draw for the tournament took place on 24 April 2012. 


There were six stadiums that hosted matches: The stadiums represent London itself and South East England, the English Midlands, North West England and North East England in England, as well as Scotland and Wales.  
Wembley Stadium
Capacity: 90,000
Old Trafford  
Capacity: 76,212  
Millennium Stadium
Capacity: 74,500
Wembley 22 August 2007
20 August 2006
5 February 2009
Newcastle upon Tyne
St. James' Park  
Capacity: 52,387  
Hampden Park
Capacity: 52,103
Ricoh Arena  
Capacity: 32,500  
21 August 2008
18 July 2004
Ricoh Arena - - 901396.jpg

NOTE: Ricoh Arena was known as the City of Coventry Stadium due to the no-commercialization policy.

Competition schedule

P Preliminaries ¼ Quarterfinals ½ Semifinals B 3rd place play-off F Final
Event↓/Date Wed 25Thu 26Fri 27Sat 28Sun 29Mon 30Tue 31Wed 1Thu 2Fri 3Sat 4Sun 5Mon 6Tue 7Wed 8Thu 9Fri 10Sat 11
Men   P     P     P     ¼     ½     B F
Women P     P     P     ¼     ½     B F    

Tie breakers

This tournament differs from other modern major international football tournaments, in that head-to-head records is not the primary way to break ties.

The ranking of the teams in each group shall be determined as follows:

  1. greatest number of points obtained in all group matches;
  2. goal difference in all group matches;
  3. greatest number of goals scored in all group matches;
  4. greatest number of points obtained in all group matches between the teams concerned;
  5. goal difference resulting from all group matches between the teams concerned;
  6. greatest number of goals scored in all group matches between the teams concerned;
  7. drawing of lots by the FIFA Organising Committee.

Men's Football

 Host City: London, Great Britain
Venue(s): City of Coventry Stadium, Coventry; Hampden Park, Glasgow; Millennium Stadium, Cardiff; Old Trafford, Manchester; St James' Park, Newcastle; Wembley Stadium, Wembley, London
Date Started: July 26, 2012
Date Finished: August 11, 2012
Format: Round-robin pools advance teams to single-elimination tournament of eight teams.


Although they had never won a gold medal at the Olympics, Brazil was favored to do so now. The squad featured top players like [Hulk], [Marcelo] and [Neymar] along with a host of talents, several of which had played when Brazil won the 2011 U-20 World Cup. Their chief opponents were expected to be Spain. They had won the European qualifier, their senior team had just won Euro 2012, and a few of those players also competed at the Olympics: [Javi Martι­nez], [Juan Mata] and [Jordi Alba]. Other contenders were the unknown British team '€“ composed of English and Welsh players, featuring veteran star [Ryan Giggs] '€“ and Mexico, which had placed third at the 2011 U-20 Worlds (runner-up Portugal didn't qualify). Four teams debuted at the Olympics: Belarus, Gabon, Senegal and United Arab Emirates.

The biggest surprise of the preliminaries was the elimination of Spain, which lost twice and drew once. The other favorites did proceed to the quarter-finals, where the hosts lost to South Korea on penalties. Brazil won 3-2 over tiny Honduras after being 1-2 down, while Mexico needed extra time against Senegal. The fourth semi-finalist was Japan, which ousted Egypt.

Both Japan and Mexico had only once before reached the semi-final stage of an Olympic football tournament, both in 1968, when the Japanese beat Mexico for the bronze. This time, the Central Americans proceeded despite an early lead through Japan's [Yuki Otsu]. South Korea, first-time Olympic semi-finalist, was too weak for the Brazilians, who proceeded into their third Olympic final.

Brazil was heavily favored for the gold, but the Mexicans delivered a sensitive blow only 28 seconds into the game, when [Oribe Peralta] struck after a defensive error. The Brazilians dominated most of the match, but were unable to seriously threaten the Mexican defense. With 15 minutes left on the clock, Peralta headed in a free kick to all but clinch the title. Hulk scored a late goal to lift the hopes of the Brazilian fans for a few minutes.

The bronze medal match saw South Korea beat Japan 2-0. Amid the celebrations, Korean player [Park Jong-Wu] held up a banner he received, stating "Dokdo is our territory" '€“ referring to the Liancourt Rocks dispute between the two nations. As the IOC does not permit athletes to make political statements, Park was immediately banned from the medal ceremony. He was later fined and banned for two matches by FIFA, and initially did not receive his Olympic medal. In February 2013 the IOC Executive Board voted to censure Park with a strong warning for inappropriate behavior, but informed the Korean Olympic Committee to deliver a bronze medal to Park "as long as it done without fanfare or publicity of any kind".

Earlier, the Korean team was also involved in another controversy. Following his team's loss to South Korea, Swiss player [Michel Morganella] called the Koreans a '€œbunch of mentally handicapped retards'€ on Twitter, for which he was promptly expelled from the team by his coach.

 Korea beat Japan to Football bronze

Korea claimed their first-ever medal in the Olympic Football tournament by defeating Japan 2–0 in the bronze medal match at Cardiff’s Millennium Stadium. The goals came either side of half-time from Arsenal’s Chuyoung Park and Korea’s captain Jacheol Koo, but this was to prove a close-fought contest as Japan pushed Korea hard. They thought they had reduced the deficit with three minutes to go when Japanese captain Maya Yoshida headed in from a corner. His effort was disallowed by the referee, however, in response to the player’s
earlier foul on Sungryong Jung in the Korean goal, enabling the bronze medallists to secure only their second victory of the competition. Hong Myung Bo, the Korean coach, hailed this generation of players as a ‘dream team’ – following in the footsteps of the squad that reached the semi-finals of the World Cup in 2002, when Bo was captain. Among the teams beaten by Korea on the way to their bronze medal was Team GB, making their first appearance in the tournament since 1960. Their quarter-final encounter finished 1–1 after normal and extra time, and it was the Koreans who won the ensuing penalty shoot-out 5–4.  The losers of the bronze medal match, Japan, had previously claimed the mighty Spain among their conquests. At the group stage, Japan defeated the World Cup winners 1– 0 in a shock result to record their first victory over Spain at any level.

Marvellous Mexico deny Brazil  in Football final

This was supposed to have been the match that saw Brazil finally add the Olympic title to its five World Cups. Yet in the event it was Mexico who scored early, stole the show and took the Football gold. Some of the 86,162 spectators at Wembley Stadium were still finding their seats when Mexico pounced on some nervous defending by the Brazil and Manchester United defender Rafael da Silva. Their boldness enabled the unmarked Oribe Peralta to fire home the opener from the edge of the penalty area after just 28 seconds. Brazil were immediately forced to chase the game. Coach Mano Menezes attempted to inject some enterprise into his attacking options by sending on Hulk for Alex Sandro in the 32nd minute. Soon after the Porto striker’s long range shot did force a save from Jose Corona in the Mexican goal. Despite their pressure, however, the previously free-scoring Brazil, overwhelming favourites for the competition, failed to make an impact on the Mexico defence. The first half ended with no further goals. Brazil began the second half brightly but Mexico held firm, with Diego Reyes playing well and Corona proving unbeatable. The goal that sealed the gold medal came in the 75th minute. Peralta’s clever run evaded the Brazilian defence and he headed home from a Marco Fabian free kick to score his fourth goal of the Olympic competition. Brazil had to press hard. Their frustration boiled over when Juan Jesus argued with Rafael before being substituted with five minutes still left on the clock. Brazil’s reward came when Hulk broke away to score in the 91st minute. Moments later Oscar might even have levelled the match, but his closerange header missed the target. So a delighted Mexican team claimed its first gold medal at London 2012, and its first medal of any colour in the Football tournament. Brazil once again missed out on the only title to elude the country, despite acquiring three silver and two bronze medals over the years. Luis Fernando Tena, the Mexico coach, described his squad as ‘18 warriors’ and added a special dedication for his gold medal. ‘I dedicate this to my late father,’ he said. ‘He is still kicking a ball up in heaven.’ His star striker, Peralta, the first man to score two goals in an Olympic final for 20 years, said, ‘I dreamed about this moment. It is one of those things you don’t get to live every day. Brazil were the favourites, but we knew that would put some extra pressure on them.’ That pressure will only intensify on the Brazilian team that lines up at Rio 2016.

The men's football tournament at the 2012 Summer Olympics was held in London and five other cities in Great Britain from 26 July to 11 August. Associations affiliated with FIFA were invited to enter their men's U-23 teams in regional qualifying competitions, from which 15 teams, plus the hosts Great Britain, reached the final tournament. Men's teams were allowed to augment their squads with three players over the age of 23. It was the first major FIFA-organised men's tournament to be held within the United Kingdom since the 1966 FIFA World Cup and was the first men's Olympic football tournament to feature a team representing Great Britain since the 1960 Summer Olympics in Rome.

The gold medal was won by Mexico who defeated Brazil 2–1 in the final.

Qualified nations

Men's tournament

Means of qualification Date of completion Venue1 Berths Qualified Senior team
FIFA Ranking2
Host nation   1  Great Britain 43
AFC Preliminary Competition 29 March 2012 Various (home and away) 3  South Korea
 United Arab Emirates
CAF Preliminary Competition 10 December 2011  Morocco 3  Gabon
CONCACAF Preliminary Competition 2 April 2012  United States 2  Mexico
CONMEBOL Preliminary Competition 12 February 2011  Peru 2  Brazil
OFC Preliminary Competition 25 March 2012  New Zealand 1  New Zealand 95
UEFA Preliminary Competition 25 June 2011  Denmark 3  Spain
AFC–CAF play-off 23 April 2012 United Kingdom Great Britain 1  Senegal 61
Total   16  
  • ^1 Locations are those of final tournaments, various qualification stages may precede matches at these specific venues.
  • ^2 Senior ranking shown for comparison only. This is an under-23 competition, which does not award ranking points for the FIFA World Rankings, neither takes it into consideration.
  • ^3 England's ranking.

Match officials

On 19 April 2012, FIFA released the list of match referees that would officiate at the Olympics.

Confederation Referee Assistants
AFC Ravshan Irmatov (Uzbekistan) Abdukhamidullo Rasulov (Uzbekistan)
Bakhadyr Kochkarov (Kyrgyzstan)
Yuichi Nishimura (Japan) Toru Sagara (Japan)
Toshiyuki Nagi (Japan)
Ben Williams (Australia) Matthew Cream (Australia)
Hakan Anaz (Australia)
CAF Bakary Gassama (Gambia) Jason Damoo (Seychelles)
Angesom Ogbamariam (Eritrea)
Slim Jedidi (Tunisia) Bechir Hassani (Tunisia)
Sherif Hassan (Egypt)
CONCACAF Roberto García (Mexico) José Luis Camargo (Mexico)
Alberto Morín (Mexico)
Mark Geiger (United States) Mark Hurd (United States)
Joe Fletcher (Canada)
CONMEBOL Raúl Orosco (Bolivia) Efraín Castro (Bolivia)
Arol Valda (Bolivia)
Wilmar Roldán (Colombia) Humberto Clavijo (Colombia)
Eduardo Díaz (Colombia)
Juan Soto (Venezuela) Jorge Urrego (Venezuela)
Carlos López (Venezuela)
OFC Peter O'Leary (New Zealand) Jan-Hendrik Hintz (New Zealand)
Ravinesh Kumar (Fiji)
UEFA Felix Brych (Germany) Stefan Lupp (Germany)
Mark Borsch (Germany)
Mark Clattenburg (Great Britain) Stephen Child (Great Britain)
Simon Beck (Great Britain)
Pavel Královec (Czech Republic) Martin Wilczek (Czech Republic)
Antonín Kordula (Czech Republic)
Svein Oddvar Moen (Norway) Kim Haglund (Norway)
Frank Andas (Norway)
Gianluca Rocchi (Italy) Elenito Di Liberatore (Italy)
Gianluca Cariolato (Italy)


The draw for the tournament took place on 24 April 2012. Great Britain, Mexico, Brazil and Spain were seeded for the draw and placed into groups A–D, respectively. The remaining teams were drawn from four pots with teams from the same region kept apart.

Pot 1Pot 2Pot 3Pot 4
  •  Great Britain (assigned to A1)
  •  Spain (assigned to D1)
  •   Switzerland
  •  Belarus
  •  Brazil (assigned to C1)
  •  Uruguay
  •  Mexico (assigned to B1)
  •  Honduras
  •  Japan
  •  South Korea
  •  United Arab Emirates
  •  New Zealand
  •  Egypt
  •  Morocco
  •  Gabon
  •  Senegal

Knockout stage

  Quarter-finals   Semi-finals   Gold medal match
  A1  Great Britain 1 (4)  
  B2  South Korea (p) 1 (5)  
    B2  South Korea 0  
    C1  Brazil 3  
  C1  Brazil 3    
  D2  Honduras 2  
      C1  Brazil 1
    B1  Mexico 2
  B1  Mexico (aet) 4  
  A2  Senegal 2  
    B1  Mexico 3   Bronze medal match
    D1  Japan 1  
  D1  Japan 3   B2  South Korea 2
  C2  Egypt 0     D1  Japan 0


August 11, 2012, 3:00 pm BST
Brazil Brasile 1 - 2
Messico Mexico Wembley Stadium (86 162 spect.)
Referee: Regno Unito Clattenburg
Brazil faces Mexico in the final of this men's football A7 tournament. The match is disputed on Wembley lawn in London before 86,162 spectators. It is refereed by the British Mark Clattenburg. The Mexicans opened the scoring after only twenty-eight seconds of play after a Brazilian error. Indeed, the pass behind Rafael towards Sandro is intercepted by Aquino who launches Peralta. He beats Gabriel with a low shot. The Auriverdes get an opportunity by Hulk who came into play during the first period in place of Alex Sandro. His strike from thirty meters is hardly repelled by Corona. On returning from the locker room, the Brazilians attack again but the shot from Neymar passes over (47th). Shortly after the hour, the Mexicans are close to doubling the score on a new Brazilian error. Following a failed clearance from Thiago Silva, Fabián finds himself in a duel with Gabriel, following a duel lost to goalkeeper Fabián acrobatically takes the ball which ends its race on the Brazilian crossbar. At the 69th Peralta scored a goal but which was refused for an offside. A quarter of an hour from the end, Fabián's free kick finds Peralta demarcated at the penalty spot, which with a powerful header deceives Gabriel. In additional time, Hulk launched into the depths deceives Corona. In the last of three minutes of overtime Oscar gets an opportunity to equalize but his header crosses the crossbar of Corona. With this success (2-1) Mexico wins its first Olympic gold medal in football, it is also Mexico's only gold medal at the 2012 Olympic Games, Brazil failing for its part in final for the third time after 1984 and 1988

Final third-fourth place

August 10, 2012, 7:45 pm BST
South Korea Corea del Sud 2 - 0
Giappone Japan Millennium Stadium (56 393 spect.)
Referee: Uzbekistan Irmatov
South Korea faces Japan in the third-place match atA 7. The match takes place on the lawn of the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff in front of 56,393 spectators and is refereed by Uzbek Ravshan Irmatov. The Japanese get the first chance of the match shortly before half an hour of play by Kiyotake, but his long shot is rejected by Jung Sung-Ryong despite a rebound. In the 38th minute, Arsenal Park forward Chu-young opened the scoring. Following a lonely raid, he deceives Shūichi Gonda with a close-to-the-ground strike . A few minutes later, the South Koreans get a new opportunity but the recovery of Yun misses the Japanese cage. In the second half, the Taegeuk warriors widened the gap. Launched in depth by Park Chu-young, Captain Koo Ja-cheol marks a crossover. Two minutes later Kim Bo-Kyung has the opportunity to make the mark worse, but his shot from outside the area is diverted by Gonda161. The Japanese on a corner kick shortly before the end believe to reduce the gap by Yoshida but the goal is refused by the referee for a charge by Otsu on Jung Sung-Ryong. With this victory South Korea climbs on its first Olympic podium. On the other hand, Japan does not succeed in repeating its 1968 performance


August 7, 2012, 5:00 pm BST
Mexico Messico 3 - 1
Giappone Japan Wembley Stadium (82 372 spect.)
Referee: Italia Rocchi

August 7, 2012, 7:45 pm BST
South Korea Corea del Sud 0 - 3
Brasile Brazil Old Trafford (69 389 spect.)
Referee: Rep. Ceca Královec

Brazil faces South Korea in the semi-finalA 7. The match takes place on the lawn of Old Trafford before 69,389 spectators. It is refereed by the Czech Pavel Královec. This is the second meeting between the two teams at the Olympic games. In their only confrontation in 1964, Brazil beat South Korea four goals to zero in the group stage. At the 38th minute of play, the new recruit of Chelsea Oscar launches Rômulo deep in the opposing area. The Brazilian midfielder's instant strike passes under the Korean goalkeeper to open the Brazilian score. During the second period, the Brazilians stood out thanks to the double of their striker Leandro Damião. In the 57th minute, Neymar and Marcelo combine in the area following a one-two, Neymar back to Marcelo who misses his recovery; the ball is then picked up by Leandro Damião at the penalty spot and takes Lee Bum-young on the wrong foot. Six minutes later, Damião scores his second straight double since on a one-two attempt between Oscar and Neymar the ball is deflected by the South Korean defense in his feet. Brazil won the match three goals to zero and qualified for their third final after 1984 and 1988


August 4, 2012, 12:00 BST
Japan Giappone 3 - 0
Egitto Egypt Old Trafford (70 772 spect.)
Referee: Stati Uniti Geiger

August 4, 2012, 2.30 pm BST
Mexico Messico 4 - 2
( dts )
Senegal Senegal Wembley Stadium (81 855 spect.)
Referee: Regno Unito Clattenburg

August 4, 2012, 5:00 pm BST
Brazil Brasile 3 - 2
Honduras Honduras St James' Park (42 166 spect.)
Referee: Germania Brych

August 4, 2012, 7:30 pm BST
Great Britain Gran Bretagna 1 - 1
( dts )
Corea del Sud South Korea Millennium Stadium (70 171 spectators)
Referee: Colombia Roldán
Great Britain, host nation of the event and winner of group A, faces South Korea second in group B in the quarter-finalA 6. The game on the lawn of the Cardiff Millennium Stadium in front of 70,171 spectators is refereed by the Colombian Wilmar Roldan. The Koreans opened the scoring in the half hour of play by Ji Dong-won, the powerful and distant strike of the striker from Sunderland deceiving Butland. A few minutes later, a hand fault by Oh Jae-suk on a shot from Ryan Bertrand offered the opportunity for the British to equalize, lucky Aaron Ramsey transforms the penalty, the ball having been touched by Jung Sung-Ryong. The British get a new penalty in the process, Aaron Ramsey sees his shot diverted by Jung Sung-Ryong this time. Despite the entry into play of veteran Welshman Ryan Giggs, none of the teams makes the difference. During the penalty shootout, all the South Koreans succeed in their penalty shootout. The final shot on goal is taken by Chelsea player Sturridge, but his shot is stopped by substitute goalkeeper Lee Bum-young. South Korea qualifies for their first Olympic semi-final with this qualification

Preliminary round

Group winners and runners-up advanced to the quarter-finals (also see Tie breakers).

All times are British Summer Time (UTC+1).

Group A

PosTeam PldWDLGFGAGDPtsQualification
1  Great Britain 3 2 1 0 5 2 +3 7 Qualified for knockout stage
2  Senegal 3 1 2 0 4 2 +2 5
3  Uruguay 3 1 0 2 2 4 −2 3  
4  United Arab Emirates 3 0 1 2 3 6 −3 1
Uruguay launched its competition with a success (2-1) against the United Arab Emirates, despite the opening score of UAE captain Matar. The Uruguayans came back to match their opponent shortly before the break thanks to the direct free kick from Gastón Ramírez, Nicolás Lodeiro scoring the goal of victory for Uruguay in the 56th minute. Great Britain plays the second match of the day played on the lawn of Old Trafford against Senegal. The British open the scoring through the Welshman Craig Bellamy who takes a stolen free kick from captain Ryan Giggs badly repulsed by the Senegalese defense, ten minutes before the term equalizes Senegal by Konate, who launched well in depth deceives Butland d 'a little balloon stung. Great Britain begins its Olympic tournament with a draw (1-1).

The second day is contested on July 29, 2012 at Wembley. At the first meeting Uruguay is surprised by Senegal. The lion cubs of Téranga open the scoring from the tenth minute of play, on a corner Martín Campaña pushes a Senegalese head directly into Konaté's feet who pushes the leather into the back of the net. Defender Abdoulaye Ba leaves his partners outnumbered after half an hour of play following a foul on Luis Suárez. Seven minutes later Konaté scored his second goal of the game on a new winning corner. Despite its numerical superiority for one hour Uruguay does not manage to fall behind and bowed (2-0). Great Britain then faces the United Arab Emirates in the second match of the day. The British took the lead in the first half thanks to their captain Giggs. Rashed Eisa ties the two teams tied for an hour. The British rebound by scoring two goals in three minutes by Scott Sinclair and Daniel Sturridge for a 3-1 final victory.

The third day is decisive for qualification in the quarterfinals, Senegal who only needs one point to qualify, meets the United Arab Emirates at the City of Coventry Stadium. Despite the opening score of Matar in the first period, the Senegalese return to the match thanks to the inevitable Konate which brings Senegal up to the height after the resumption. The score no longer evolving thereafter, Senegal qualified for the quarter-finals. At the same time Great Britain and Uruguay meet at the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff in front of 70,438 spectators. The British take the advantage just before the break thanks to Daniel Sturridge, the Uruguayan gets a big opportunity late in the game when a strike from Gastón Ramírez hits the amounts of Butland. With this 1-0 victory the British advance to the quarterfinals while Uruguay are eliminated


July 26, 2012, 5:00 pm BST
United Arab Emirates Flag of the United Arab Emirates.svg 1 - 2
Flag of Uruguay.svg Uruguay Old Trafford (51 745 spect.)
Referee: Nuova Zelanda O'Leary

July 26, 2012, 8:00 p.m. BST
Great Britain Flag of the United Kingdom.svg 1 - 1
Flag of Senegal.svg Senegal Old Trafford (72 176 spect.)
Referee: Uzbekistan Irmatov

July 29, 2012, 5:00 pm BST
Senegal Flag of Senegal.svg 2 - 0
Flag of Uruguay.svg Uruguay Wembley Stadium (75 093 spect.)
Referee: Germania Brych

July 29, 2012, 7:45 pm BST
Great Britain Flag of the United Kingdom.svg 3 - 1
Flag of the United Arab Emirates.svg United Arab Emirates Wembley Stadium (85 137 spect.)
Referee: Messico García

August 1, 2012, 7.45 pm BST
Senegal Flag of Senegal.svg 1 - 1
Flag of the United Arab Emirates.svg United Arab Emirates City of Coventry Stadium (28 652 spect.)
Referee: Norvegia Moen

August 1, 2012, 7.45 pm BST
Great Britain Flag of the United Kingdom.svg 1 - 0
Flag of Uruguay.svg Uruguay Millennium Stadium (70 438 spectators)
Referee: Giappone Nishimura

Group B

PosTeam PldWDLGFGAGDPtsQualification
1  Mexico 3 2 1 0 3 0 +3 7 Qualified for knockout stage
2  South Korea 3 1 2 0 2 1 +1 5
3  Gabon 3 0 2 1 1 3 −2 2  
4   Switzerland 3 0 1 2 2 4 −2 1
The competition begins at St James' Park in Newcastle for the four teams of Group B. During the first meeting Mexico is opposed to South Korea. The Mexicans get a few chances late in the game but fail to score. The two teams therefore draw (0-0) for their entry into the competition. Switzerland then faces Gabon in the second match of the day. The Swiss obtain a penalty from the third minute for a fault by Henri Ndong on Innocent Emeghara. The sentence was transformed by Mehmedi by taking Didier Ovono on the wrong foot. Gabonese are not let down and get an opportunity through Jerry Obiang who shoots the crossbar. Shortly before half-time Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang ideally launched by N'Doumbou equalizes, taking advantage of the laxity of the Swiss defense. At the end of the match Oliver Buff is sent off for a simulation following a second warning. Gabonese and Swiss finally split in a draw 1-1.

The second day is disputed in Coventry. First of all, Mexico meets Gabon. If, in the first period the two selections were equal, in the second period the Mexicans took the upper hand with a double from Giovani dos Santos who opened the scoring in the 63rd minute on a counter attack before registering a penalty in overtime. Then, South Korea faces Switzerland. The South Koreans open the brand by Park Chu-young who deceives Benaglio with a diving head in the 57th minute. The Swiss immediately returned to the match, Emeghara equalizing with a header from a Rodríguez center three minutes later. However, on a volley by Kim Bo-kyung the South Koreans definitively regained the advantage in the 64th minute. The South Koreans therefore won 2-1 against Nati. The post-match was marked by insults by Michel Morganella towards the South Korean players. He was excluded from selection the next day.

On the third and last day, Mexico faces Switzerland, which has to win by two goals to avoid being eliminated. In the 69th minute, Peralta launched by Giovani dos Santos comes to beat Benaglio for what is the only goal of the match. This result gives the group first place in Mexico, Switzerland being eliminated. At the same time, South Korea and Gabon compete at the Wembley Stadium. Both caps draw (0-0), qualifying South Korea for the next round


July 26, 2012, 2.30 pm BST
Mexico Flag of Mexico.svg 0 - 0
Flag of South Korea.svg South Korea St James' Park (15 748 spect.)
Referee: Tunisia Jedidi

July 26, 2012, 5.15 pm BST
Gabon Flag of Gabon.svg 1 - 1
Flag of Switzerland.svg Switzerland St James' Park (15 748 spect.)
Referee: Colombia Roldán

July 29, 2012, 2.30 pm BST
Mexico Flag of Mexico.svg 2 - 0
Flag of Gabon.svg Gabon City of Coventry Stadium (28 171 spect.)
Referee: Australia Williams

July 29, 2012, 5:15 pm BST
South Korea Flag of South Korea.svg 2 - 1
Flag of Switzerland.svg Switzerland City of Coventry Stadium (30 114 spect.)
Referee: Bolivia Orosco

August 1, 2012, 5:00 pm BST
Mexico Flag of Mexico.svg 1 - 0
Flag of Switzerland.svg Switzerland Millennium Stadium (50 000 spectators)
Referee: Uzbekistan Irmatov

August 1, 2012, 5:00 pm BST
South Korea Flag of South Korea.svg 0 - 0
Flag of Gabon.svg Gabon Wembley Stadium (76 927 spect.)
Referee: Rep. Ceca Královec

Group C

PosTeam PldWDLGFGAGDPtsQualification
1  Brazil 3 3 0 0 9 3 +6 9 Qualified for knockout stage
2  Egypt 3 1 1 1 6 5 +1 4
3  Belarus 3 1 0 2 3 6 −3 3  
4  New Zealand 3 0 1 2 1 5 −4 1
On the first day, Belarus faces New Zealand at the City of Coventry Stadium. In additional time in the first period, Belarus opened the scoring on a corner, the missed punched out of O'Keefe allowed Dzmitry Baha to score a header in the empty goal. In the second half, the Belarusians continued to dominate, but O'Keefe rejected their attempts. At the very end of the game, Kornilenko sees his powerful shot repelled by the New Zealand bar. Belarus ideally launches its competition with a success (1-0). Brazil meets Egypt at the same time at the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff. The Brazilians quickly take the lead. Launched by Oscar, Rafael opens the scoring in the quarter-hour of play. On a long ball forward Oscar recovers the ball before dribbling the Egyptian porter. His back pass finds Leandro Damião scoring in the empty goal. At the half-hour mark, Brazilian star Neymar gave his head three goals ahead. In the second period, the physiognomy of the match radically changed since after only seven minutes in the second act Mohamed Aboutreika reduced the gap before Salah scored a second goal for his own in the 76th minute. However, Brazil ends up winning (3-2).

On the second day, Egypt and New Zealand meet at Old Trafford. The All Whites opened the scoring soon after the quarter-hour through West Bromwich Wood forward where he took advantage of a corner kick from Smith's deflection to score. Shortly before the break Egypt equalizes, in a center of Moteab, Salah comes to deceive the kiwi porter. Despite the pharaohs' relative dominance, the two teams shared the points in the draw. Brazil then faces Belarus. Kazlow's long center finds Bressan unmarked at the far post. His stung head ends up running in Neto's little net. At the fifteenth minute of play, the center of Neymar finds the head of Pato who takes the best on defender Kuzmyanok to restore the two teams to equality. Neymar gave the Auriverdes the lead with a free kick shortly after the hour. In added time, the Seleção scored another goal. Oscar is launched by Neymar's heel and wins his duel with Hutar with a powerful strike from within. This Brazilian success (3-1) qualified the Auriverdes for the quarterfinals.

Brazil, already qualified, meets New Zealand at St James' Park in Newcastle. The Brazilians opened the scoring after twenty-three minutes, Danilo cheating O'Keefe after a one-two with Leandro Damião. Damião scored six minutes after a second goal on a work by Alex Sandro. In the second half, Sandro, left alone at the far post, scored the last goal of the match, on an offset free kick drawn by Marcelo. With this victory (3-0) the Auriverdes take first place in the group. At the same time Egypt and Belarus vie for second place in the quarterfinals on the lawn of Hampden Park in Glasgow. Despite a certain domination by the Egyptians at the end of the first period, it was not until the 56th minute to see the opening of the score by Salah. Subsequently, Mohsen then Aboutreika scored two new goals. At the end of the match, Varankow reduced the gap. This victory (3-1) allows Egypt to qualify


July 26, 2012, 7:45 pm BST
Belarus Flag of Belarus.svg 1 - 0
Flag of New Zealand.svg New Zeland City of Coventry Stadium (14 457 spect.)
Referee: Gambia Gassama

July 26, 2012, 7:45 pm BST
Brazil Flag of Brazil.svg 3 - 2
Flag of Egypt.svg Egypt Millennium Stadium (26 812 spect.)
Referee: Italia Rocchi

July 29, 2012, 12:00 BST
Egypt Flag of Egypt.svg 1 - 1
Flag of New Zealand.svg New Zeland Old Trafford (50 050 spect.)
Referee: Regno Unito Clattenburg

July 29, 2012, 3:00 pm BST
Brazil Flag of Brazil.svg 3 - 1
Flag of Belarus.svg Belarus Old Trafford (66 212 spect.)
Referee: Giappone Nishimura

August 1, 2012, 2.30 pm BST
Brazil Flag of Brazil.svg 3 - 0
Flag of New Zealand.svg New Zeland St James' Park (25 201 spect.)
Referee: Gambia Gassama

August 1, 2012, 2.30 pm BST
Egypt Flag of Egypt.svg 3 - 1
Flag of Belarus.svg Belarus Hampden Park (8 732 spect.)
Referee: Messico García

Group D

PosTeam PldWDLGFGAGDPtsQualification
1  Japan 3 2 1 0 2 0 +2 7 Qualified for knockout stage
2  Honduras 3 1 2 0 3 2 +1 5
3  Morocco 3 0 2 1 2 3 −1 2  
4  Spain 3 0 1 2 0 2 −2 1
On the first day played at Hampden Park in Glasgow, Honduras and Morocco drew (2-2). In the next match, Japan won (1-0) against Spain reduced to ten in the first period.

On the second day, Japan defeated Morocco thanks to a late Kensuke Nagai goal. this victory qualifies the Japanese Olympic selection for the quarterfinals. in the second match of the day, the Spanish team is again defeated (1-0). La Rojita, however, among the favorites of the event is therefore eliminated on the second day.

On the third and last day, the match between Japan and Honduras disputed at the City of Coventry Stadium ended in a draw (0-0). The group's second meeting between Spain and Morocco, played at Old Trafford, also ended in a goalless draw. These two teams are therefore eliminated.


July 26, 2012, 12:00 BST
Honduras Flag of Honduras.svg 2 - 2
Flag of Morocco.svg Morocco Hampden Park (23 421 spect.)
Referee: Rep. Ceca Královec

July 26, 2012, 2.45 pm BST
Spain Flag of Spain.svg 0 - 1
Flag of Japan.svg Japan Hampden Park (37 726 spect.)
Referee: Stati Uniti Geiger

July 29, 2012, 5:00 pm BST
Japan Flag of Japan.svg 1 - 0
Flag of Morocco.svg Morocco St James' Park (24 936 spect.)
Referee: Norvegia Moen

July 29, 2012, 7:45 pm BST
Spain Flag of Spain.svg 0 - 1
Flag of Honduras.svg Honduras St James' Park (26 523 spect.)
Referee: Venezuela Soto

August 1, 2012, 5:00 pm BST
Japan Flag of Japan.svg 0 - 0
Flag of Honduras.svg Honduras City of Coventry Stadium (25 862 spect.)
Referee: Tunisia Jedidi

August 1, 2012, 5:00 pm BST
Spain Flag of Spain.svg 0 - 0
Flag of Morocco.svg Morocco Old Trafford (35 973 spect.)
Referee: Australia Williams

Final ranking

Place Nation MWDLG +GGDPts
Aranyérem Gold Mexikó Mexico ( MEX ) 6 5 1 0 12 4 +8 16
Ezüstérem Silver Brazília Brazil ( BRA ) 6 5 0 1 16 7 +9 15
Bronzérem Bronze Dél-Korea South Korea ( KOR ) 6 2 3 1 5 5 0 9
4th Japán Japan ( JPN ) 6 3 1 2 6 5 +1 10
5th Nagy-Britannia Great Britain ( GBR ) 4 2 2 0 6 3 +3 8
6th Szenegál Senegal ( SEN ) 4 1 2 1 6 6 0 5
7th Honduras Honduras ( HON ) 4 1 2 1 5 5 0 5
8th Egyiptom Egypt ( EGY ) 4 1 1 2 6 8 -2 4
9th Uruguay Uruguay ( URU ) 3 1 0 2 2 4 -2 3
10th Fehéroroszország Belarus ( BLR ) 3 1 0 2 3 6 -3 3
11th Marokkó Morocco ( MAR ) 3 0 2 1 2 3 -1 2
12th Gabon Gabon ( GAB ) 3 0 2 1 1 3 -2 2
13th Svájc Switzerland ( SUI ) 3 0 1 2 2 4 -2 1
14th Spanyolország Spain ( ESP ) 3 0 1 2 0 2 -2 1
15th Egyesült Arab Emírségek United Arab Emirates ( UAE ) 3 0 1 2 3 6 -3 1
16th Új-Zéland New Zealand ( NZL ) 3 0 1 2 1 5 -4 1



With six goals, Leandro Damião of Brazil is the top scorer in the tournament. In total, 76 goals were scored by 49 different players, with none of them credited as own goal.

6 goals
  • Brazil Leandro Damião
5 goals
  • Senegal Moussa Konaté
4 goals
  • Mexico Oribe Peralta
3 goals
  • Brazil Neymar
  • Egypt Mohamed Salah


  • Honduras Jerry Bengtson
  • Japan Yūki Ōtsu


  • Mexico Giovani dos Santos


2 goals
  • Egypt Mohamed Aboutrika
  • United Kingdom Daniel Sturridge


  • Japan Kensuke Nagai
  • South Korea Park Chu-Young


  • United Arab Emirates Ismail Matar


1 goal
  • Belarus Dzmitry Baha
  • Belarus Renan Bressan
  • Belarus Andrey Varankow
  • Brazil Danilo
  • Brazil Hulk
  • Brazil Oscar
  • Brazil Alexandre Pato
  • Brazil Rafael
  • Brazil Rômulo
  • Brazil Sandro
  • Egypt Marwan Mohsen
  • Gabon Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang


  • United Kingdom Craig Bellamy
  • United Kingdom Ryan Giggs
  • United Kingdom Aaron Ramsey
  • United Kingdom Scott Sinclair
  • Honduras Roger Espinoza
  • Honduras Mario Martínez
  • Japan Maya Yoshida
  • South Korea Koo Ja-Cheol
  • South Korea Kim Bo-Kyung
  • South Korea Ji Dong-Won
  • Mexico Javier Aquino
  • Mexico Javier Cortés


  • Mexico Jorge Enríquez
  • Mexico Marco Fabián
  • Mexico Héctor Herrera
  • Morocco Abdelaziz Barrada
  • Morocco Zakaria Labyad
  • New Zealand Chris Wood
  • Senegal Ibrahima Baldé
  • Switzerland Innocent Emeghara
  • Switzerland Admir Mehmedi
  • United Arab Emirates Rashed Eisa
  • Uruguay Nicolás Lodeiro
  • Uruguay Gastón Ramírez



Red cards
  • Brazil Alex Sandro
  • Gabon Henri Ndong
  • Egypt Saad Samir


  • Honduras Wilmer Crisanto
  • Honduras Roger Espinoza
  • Morocco Zakarya Bergdich


  • Senegal Abdoulaye Ba
  • Spain Iñigo Martínez
  • Switzerland Oliver Buff



For the first matchday at St James' Park, there were long queues at the box office, leading to fans missing some of the game. A spokesman for Ticketmaster said: "We saw extremely high numbers of spectators arriving at St James' Park to purchase football tickets on the day of the event. While Ticketmaster is contracted to manage the box offices at Olympic venues, the staff numbers at those venues are determined by LOCOG. We will continue to work closely with LOCOG to ensure that the box office staff levels are sufficient to meet the demands for ticket sales and collection". LOCOG described the situation as "totally and completely 100% unacceptable", and after changes were made in the process, the issue was reportedly avoided for the second round of matches.

During the matches held at the Wembley Stadium on 29 July, fans were subjected to long queues at the concession stands in the ground after Visa's card payment system crashed, leaving cash payment as the only alternative. The situation was compounded by the fact that, as Visa had been granted exclusive rights to the Olympics, other cards could not be accepted as payment, and the number of cash machines in the stadium had been reduced after 27 that worked on the LINK system had been removed to be replaced by eight that could only be used by Visa cards.

There were several problems relating to transport for events held at the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff. There was severe congestion at Cardiff Central railway station when Great Britain played South Korea; and the bronze medal match also had rail disruption when a retaining wall collapsed onto the tracks.

Player sent home

Swiss footballer Michel Morganella was sent home by the Switzerland team following their 2–1 loss against South Korea after he sent a tweet that, according to the director of Swiss Olympic Committee Gian Gilli, "discriminated, insulted and violated the dignity of the South Korean football team and people".

Great Britain football teams

Following the criticism against Scottish female player Kim Little, for choosing not to sing the British national anthem "God Save the Queen" because of her national identity, other Scottish and Welsh players, Ryan Giggs, Craig Bellamy and Ifeoma Dieke, also attracted comment in the media for remaining silent. Giggs, the Great Britain men's captain, later said: "The problem is the British anthem is the same as the English anthem and if you're a Welshman or a Scotsman it's difficult".

LOCOG also apologised after an error in the official match programme for the first game mistakenly described Welsh player Joe Allen as being English.

Political statement made by Park Jong-woo

After South Korea defeated Japan in the bronze medal match at the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff on 10 August, South Korean player Park Jong-woo walked around the field holding a banner with a political message written in Korean, "독도는 우리 땅!" (dokdo neun uri ttang, lit.: "Dokdo is our territory"). This incident occurred on the same night after South Korean President Lee Myung-bak had visited the islands which both South Korea and Japan claim as their territory. The IOC and FIFA reviewed the evidence, since FIFA statutes prohibit political statements being made by athletes at Olympic events. The IOC barred Park from the bronze medal ceremony and did not permit him to receive his medal. In addition, it asked FIFA to discipline Park, and stated that it may decide on further sanctions at a later date. IOC president Jacques Rogge told reporters: "We will take a possible decision of what will happen with the medal later". FIFA failed to reach a conclusion on the case at a meeting at its Zürich headquarters held on 5 October, and the disciplinary committee discussed the case again on the following week, then again failed to reach a verdict. After that, the Korean Olympic Committee (KOC) announced that Park would receive his bronze medal. The case was heard again by the committee on 20 November, and FIFA finally decided and announced on 3 December to suspend Park for two matches after he was considered to have breached the FIFA Disciplinary Code and the Regulations of the Olympic Football Tournaments. FIFA also imposed a warning on the Korea Football Association and reminded it of its obligation to properly instruct its players on all the pertinent rules and applicable regulations before the start of any competition, in order to avoid such incidents in the future. The Korea Football Association was warned that should incidents of such nature occur again in the future, the FIFA Disciplinary Committee may impose harsher sanctions on the Korea Football Association.

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