Google Doodle for Women's World Cup
Google is marking the start of the Women's World Cup in Canada with one of its Doodles Google

The start of the Fifa Women's World Cup on 6 June in Canada will come as a welkcome break and diversion from all the gloom and doom that has been surrounding the world footballing body of late.

So what is the Women's World Cup?

The championship has been awarded every four years since the 1991 inaugural contest in China, where the US beat Norway 2-1.

However, there were unofficial tournaments from 1970 in Italy, the Coppa del Mondo, which was followed in 1971 by the Mundial in Mexico. There was also a series of Mundialito tournaments throughout the 1980s in Italy, and Fifa's Women's Invitation Tournament in China in 1988.

Japan are the current holders of the Women's World Cup, after they beat the US 3-1 on penalties following a 2-2 draw after extra time in the 2011 tournament in Germany.

The tournament is probably best known for Brandi Chastain's famous penalty-scoring celebration at the Rose Bowl in Los Angeles in 1999, when the US beat China 5-4 on penalties after a 0-0 draw.