Canada aiming for a podium finish at Uruguay 2018 in Match for Third Place against New Zealand
Posted on 30 November 2018 in ↳ Women's EXCEL U-14 to U-17
Canada Soccer’s Women’s U-17 team is aiming for a podium finish at the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup Uruguay 2018 as it gears up for the Match for Third Place against New Zealand on Saturday 1 December at 16:00 local (14:00 ET/11:00 PT) LIVE on TSN1 and RDS2 in Canada.
“This team had never played together before we began this camp in Uruguay at the start of November, so it’s incredible to see how far they’ve come, and the connections they have built, in such a short period,” said Head Coach Rhian Wilkinson. “It’s a testament to the development system we have in place in Canada, where regional centres across the nation teach the same curriculum and cultural lessons so that these players can come together with the same foundation despite some of them never having played together.”
Both Canada and New Zealand are fighting for their first-ever podium finish at the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup. Since 2008, Canada has two wins, one draw, and one loss in all competitions at the women’s youth level against New Zealand, including a 1:0 victory in the inaugural FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup New Zealand 2008. The two sides most recently faced each other in a 7 November 2018 friendly in Los Cespedes, Uruguay, with New Zealand winning 2:1 in a pre-tournament exhibition.
Canada’s match against New Zealand in Uruguay before the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup was Wilkinson’s first match at the helm as a Head Coach.
Despite the recent match, Wilkinson expects there will be surprises from both sides when the teams meet in the Match for Third Place on Saturday.
“We rotated the entire squad except for one ‘keeper in our friendly against New Zealand as we were trying our different things in preparation for the World Cup, so It’s going to be a very different match,” said Wilkinson. “But we’ve been watching them all tournament, and we know they are a very energetic team that likes to press, so we’ll be ready.”
Regardless of Saturday’s result, Canada will finish with its best showing ever in the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup. In FIFA youth competitions, Canada previously won silver at the FIFA U-19 Women’s World Championship Canada 2002. At the senior level, Canada placed fourth at the FIFA Women’s World Cup USA 2003.
“I'm a two-time bronze medallist at the Olympics, so I know the disappointment of a Semi-final loss, but I also know that the pure joy of a bronze medal and a podium finish is what we are now aiming for,” said Head Coach Rhian Wilkinson. “Going out there and putting on a performance that we are proud of is our main goal, and usually a great performance creates a positive result."
Canada has placed in the top ten participating nations in each edition of the tournament. Canada had previously reached the highest position of seventh in New Zealand 2008 and Azerbaijan 2012. Canada placed tenth at Trinidad and Tobago 2010, eighth at Costa Rica 2014, and ninth in Jordan 2016.
Canada marks the 10-year anniversary of the FIFA U-17 Women's World Cup as one of only six nations to have qualified for every edition since it was launched in 2008, alongside Germany, Ghana, Japan, New Zealand and Korea DPR.
FIFA U-17 Women's World Cup Uruguay 2018
- The official slogan for the FIFA U-17 Women's World Cup is Same Game Same Emotion. (A slogan to unite the generations).
- The tournament's four groups are Group A: Uruguay, Ghana, New Zealand, Finland; Group B: Mexico, South Africa, Brazil, Japan; Group C: USA, Cameroon, Korea DPR, Germany; and, Group D: Korea Republic, Spain, Canada, Colombia.
- A total of 32 matches, across four groups containing 16 teams, will be played to decide the winner of the FIFA U-17 Women's World Cup Uruguay 2018.
- Korea DPR are the reigning champions of the FIFA U-17 Women's World Cup and the tournament's most successful competitor with two titles (2008, 2016). Japan (2014), South Korea (2010), and France (2012) have also raised the coveted youth trophy as the world's top U-17 women's team. Korea DPR was also the runner-up in 2012 and Japan was the runner-up in both 2010 and 2016.
- Spain, whom Canada played in its final group stage match, were runners-up in 2014 and third place winners in 2010 and 2016.
- A total of 32 nations have competed in the FIFA U-17 Women's World Cup since it started in 2008.
Background – Canada Soccer Women's U-17 National Team
- Canada Soccer's Roster for the FIFA U-17 Women's World Cup Uruguay 2018: https://www.canadasoccer.com/canada-soccer-selects-21-young-players-for-fifa-u-17-women-s-world-cup-uruguay-2018-p161906
- The FIFA U-17 Women's World Cup Uruguay 2018 is Canada's sixth appearance in the penultimate competition for players born before 2004. Canada has placed in the top ten participating nations in each edition of the tournament reaching its highest position of seventh in New Zealand 2008 and Azerbaijan 2012. Canada placed tenth at Trinidad and Tobago 2010, eighth at Costa Rica 2014, and ninth in Jordan 2016, with a historical total of six wins, six draws and six losses.
- Canadians registered 14 goals at the competition prior to 2018, with Marie Levasseur topping the goal-scoring list with four in 2014.
- Canada qualified for the FIFA U-17 Women's World Cup Uruguay 2018 by capturing third place at the Concacaf U-17 Women's Championship earlier this year.
- Canada has twice before placed third in the Concacaf qualifier for the FIFA U-17 Women's World Cup, in Trinidad and Tobago 2008 and Grenada 2016. Canada won the qualifier in Costa Rica 2010 and placed second in both Jamaica 2013 and Grenada 2016. In total, Canada has 17 wins, two draws and six losses in qualification campaigns for the FIFA U-17 Women's World Cups.
- Following Canada's successful hosting of the inaugural FIFA women's youth tournament, the FIFA U-19 Women's World Championship in 2002, FIFA began making plans to hold both the FIFA U-17 Women's World Cup and FIFA U-20 Women's World Cup to match the youth competition format for men. Notably, Canada Soccer Women's National Team Captain Christine Sinclair won the golden boot for most goals at the 2002 tournament as Canada placed runners-up to the USA and launching a rivalry that thrives today.
About Canada Soccer's Women's National EXCEL Program
Canada Soccer Women's National EXCEL Program brings together the best with the best at the national youth level, throughout the year. Operating across the U-14 to U-20 age groups, the program is designed to deliver an aligned talent structure and system that progresses more top players to Canada's Women's National Team. Major competitions are viewed as staging posts to assess development and allow for the development of the Women's EXCEL Team Playing Model and tournament processes and expertise which will ultimately prepare players to progress up the system.
Additionally, the most talented U-14 to U-18 players are offered a specialised daily training environment through the Regional EXCEL Program, which deliver Canada Soccer's national curriculum year-round through a two-tiered talent system, with three Super Centres streamlining Canada's National EXCEL Players into training environments in British Columbia, Ontario and Quebec from smaller provincial licenced Centres.
Canada Soccer's Women's National Team
Canada is two-time Olympic bronze medal winners (2012 and 2016) and two-time Concacaf champions (1998 and 2010). In all, Canada has participated in six consecutive editions of the FIFA Women's World Cup (1995 to 2015) and three successive editions of the Women's Olympic Football Tournament (2008 to 2016). At Rio 2016, Canada Soccer's Women's National Team were the first Canadian Olympic team to win back-to-back medals at a summer Olympic Games in more than a century and the only FIFA Member Association to repeat on the podium.
Canada will compete for an seventh FIFA Women's World Cup in France next year. The draw to determine the group stage opponents takes place 8 December in Paris, France.
About Canada Soccer
Canada Soccer, in partnership with its membership and its partners, provides leadership in the pursuit of excellence in soccer, both at the national and international levels. Canada Soccer not only strives to lead Canada to victory, but also encourages Canadians to a life-long passion for soccer. For more details on Canada Soccer, visit the official website at www.canadasoccer.com.