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A soccer tournament to change the world

A women's soccer tournament is helping to shine a spotlight on the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in New York City. Each team champions one of the SDGs - and their goals reach far beyond the soccer field.


Each year during the United Nations’ high-level week, the teams that have qualified to compete in the Global Goals World Cup convene for a tournament. These players have already carried out wide-ranging efforts to promote their selected SDG. They might have collected donations for the local school, demonstrated for measures to mitigate climate change, or a myriad other activities to help achieve their goal.  

Crown Prince Haakon and actor Nikolaj Coster-Waldau with the winning team, the Goleadoras of Queens, NY. Photo: Pontus Höök / NTB scanpix.

Day of finals

Yesterday evening Norwegian time the teams took the field, an indoor pitch on the 48th floor of 10 Hudson Yard.

His Royal Highness Crown Prince Haakon participated as a sports commentator and also served as a referee during the final match. The winning squad faced a team comprised of high-profile champions of the Sustainable Development Goals, such as UN Goodwill Ambassadors actor Nikolaj Coster-Waldau and singer-songwriter Akon. Prime Minister Erna Solberg was also one of the players in yesterday’s matches. 

Crown Prince Haakon had the pleasure of presenting the winners' trophy, designed by Icelandic artist Olafur Eliasson. Photo: Pontus Höök / NTB scanpix.


In the end it was the Goleadoras from Queens, New York, who emerged victorious in the tournament. They play to promote Sustainable Development Goal 5: “Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls,” and campaign actively in support of equal opportunities for girls and boys, women and men. 


After the match the Crown Prince, Erna Solberg, Nikolaj Coster-Waldau and Akon participated in a panel to discuss the Sustainable Development Goals. Photo: Pontus Höök / NTB scanpix.



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