#RiseHigher – Canada ready to face hosts Japan in the opening match of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games

#CANWNT #RiseHigher #Tokyo2020

Canada Soccer’s Women’s National Team is ready to kick off their Olympic journey at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games. Canada will face the Olympic hosts and former FIFA Women’s World Cup™ champions Japan, South American nation Chile, and Great Britain in Group E of the Women’s Olympic Football Tournament.

Canada will kick off their Olympic Games journey when they face Japan in the opening match of the Women’s Olympic Football Tournament in Sapporo on 21 July at 19.30 local (06.30 ET / 03.30 PT). The match will be broadcast live on CBC and fans will also find extended coverage across Canada Soccer’s digital channels on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and YouTube featuring the hashtag #CANWNT.

For Canada Soccer’s Women’s National Team Head Coach Bev Priestman, the objective is clear: to make history by getting back on the podium for a third consecutive time.

“We have world-class high-performance players that want to win and they have been very clear that they want to change the colour of the medal,” said Priestman. “Changing the colour of the medal is ultimately what we want to achieve. So far for us it will be how we approach the tournament, we have six games in eighteen days in very difficult playing conditions. We will need to use our depth well, but I truly believe that on any given days, if we turn up and we are ready, we can do that.”

Canada’s team will once again be led by two-time Olympic bronze medallist and Captain Christine Sinclair. Sinclair will be participating at her fourth Women’s Olympic Football Tournament and thinks that the depth of the current squad is exciting to watch.

“We have 22 players that could be making a huge difference on the pitch and I don’t think we necessarily had that much depth in the past,” said Sinclair. “All our players are playing in top leagues around the world and they are ready to go. It’s a unique group, that is very enjoyable and very competitive, and I wouldn’t be here if I didn’t feel we wouldn’t have a chance to win.”

This will be the 15th international meeting between Canada and Japan since they first met on 5 May 1995 in Tokyo. The two sides have traded wins in their last two meetings, with Canada the winners in 2018 at the Algarve Cup in Portugal and Japan the winners in 2019 after Canada traveled to meet their hosts in Shizuoka. Both Canada and Japan most recently reached the Round of 16 at the FIFA Women’s World Cup France 2019™. In the past decade Japan were champions at the FIFA Women’s World Cup Germany 2011 and silver medal winners at both the London 2012 Olympic Games and FIFA Women’s World Cup Canada 2015.

After their opening match, Canada will face Chile on 24 July at 16.30 local (03.30 ET / 00.30 PT), before wrapping up the group phase against Great Britain in Kashima on 27 July at 20.00 local (07.00 ET / 04.00 PT). From 12 nations in three groups, the top-eight nations advance to the Olympic Quarterfinals from which winners then advance to the Semifinals and then a chance to win a medal. The Women’s Olympic Football Tournament runs 21 July through 6 August 2021, with this year’s gold medal match at Tokyo’s Olympic Stadium.

Canada are one of just five nations in the world that have qualified for each of the past four Women’s Olympic Football Tournaments. Canada are also the only nation in the world to reach the podium at both London 2012 and Rio 2016 in women’s football.

OLYMPIC MEDAL WINNERS & CONCACAF CHAMPIONS

Canada are two-time Olympic bronze medal winners (2012 and 2016) and two-time Concacaf champions (1998 and 2010). In all, Canada have participated in seven consecutive editions of the FIFA Women’s World Cup™ (1995 to 2019) and three consecutive 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.

Canada Soccer’s Women’s National Youth Teams, meanwhile, have won four Concacaf youth titles: the 2004 and 2008 Concacaf Women’s Under-20 Championship, the 2010 Concacaf Women’s Under-17 Championship, and the 2014 Concacaf Girls’ Under-15 Championship. Canada have qualified for seven editions of the FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup (including a silver medal at Canada 2002) and all six editions of the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup (including a fourth-place finish at Uruguay 2018).

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