NEWCASTLE, England: France will face Sweden in the first quarter-final of the Olympic women's football tournament in Glasgow later this week, a rematch of the third-place match at the 2011 World Cup.
The United States beat North Korea 1-0 to finish top of Group G with nine points, meaning the Americans will travel from Manchester to Newcastle for their last-eight match. The U.S., who had already qualified before yesterday's match, will have to await the outcome of the two late Group E matches to determine who they will play.
Abby Wambach's goal in the 25th minute was enough for the U.S. to secure top spot. North Korea still had a chance to advance, depending on the results of the other games. North Korea finished the match with 10 women after Choe Mi Gyong picked up two yellow cards.
"It's now or never - lose and you go home," Wambach said. "But this is the fun part. This is what it is all about. We came here for the gold medal and that's what we want to go home with."
The French finished second in the group with six points, three behind the U.S., after eliminating Colombia from the tournament with a 1-0 win in Newcastle on Tuesday.
Now, they will be seeking revenge at Hampden Park, because Sweden beat France 2-1 at the World Cup in Germany to finish third at the tournament.
"We know we will play Sweden, but more importantly we're delighted to qualify," midfielder Laure Boulleau said.
Canada had to fight back against Sweden at St. James' Park to advance to the quarter-finals, earning a 2-2 draw. Sweden scored twice in two minutes with goals from midfielder Marie Hammarstrom in the 14th and forward Sofia Jakobsson in the 16th. Sweden finished first in Group F with five points, ahead of Japan on goal difference, and had already qualified for the next round. Canada finished third with four points.
The Canadians could face the U.S. in the next round.
"They're our rivals and although we don't have a great record against them they are beatable," Canada midfielder Kaylyn Kyle said. "Everyone in this tournament is beatable. To be the best, you have got to beat they best and they are the best for a reason."
The Swedish will have to lift their spirits for the quarterfinals after letting a two-goal advantage slip away.
"We have a good mood in the group and we're all well and confident, so there won't be a problem picking ourselves up," said forward Sofia Jakobsson, who scored Sweden's second.
World champion Japan failed to score for a second consecutive match, drawing 0-0 with South Africa, which exits the tournament. Having already secured a quarterfinal spot, Japan coach Norio Sasaki began the match with just four regular starters.
"It was the coach's instruction that we wanted to stay in Cardiff and come second in the group, so I knew that the bench were getting information about the other match and I had been told," Japan defender Azusa Iwashimizu said. "So it was difficult to play, but I understood his idea because it is something we needed to do in order to get a medal."
The Japanese will also have to wait for the finish of the late matches before they know their opponents in their quarterfinal to be played in Cardiff.
Japan's senior women's team beat the United States last year in Germany to win the World Cup. The under-23 team is now seeking to win its first Olympic medal.
But Japan needs to improve its form to have a chance. The team beat Canada 2-1 in its opening match, but was held 0-0 by Switzerland in its second match.
Host Britain takes on Brazil, both of whom have already advanced, and New Zealand plays Cameroon in the late matches.
All of the quarter-final matches will be played on Friday.