Bev Priestman names CanWNT squad for crucial September Olympic qualifiers

Bev Priestman’s 25-player squad ahead of a huge two matches for the Canadian women’s national team was revealed on Friday, two weeks before the first leg of their Paris 2024 Olympic qualifying series against Jamaica.

Of the 25 players named to the squad, 21 were in Australia in July as Canada were eliminated in the group stage at the 2023 Women’s World Cup. Sophie Schmidt retired from international duty at the end of the tournament, while Allysha Chapman is the other player missing out. Coming into the team are defenders Sydney Collins, Jade Rose, and Bianca St-Georges, as well as midfielder Marie-Yasmine Alidou.

After the disappointing way that the World Cup ended for Les Rouges, they will be keen to put it behind them quickly and qualify for the Olympics, where they have reached the podium three times in a row, including winning the gold medal at Tokyo 2020. The Reggae Girlz, who were competing at their first-ever Women’s World Cup, made it out of the group stage after drawing with France and Brazil and beating Panama, before falling 1-0 to Colombia in the round of 16.

The winner of this upcoming two-match series will head to Paris next year, while the other will miss out. The two sides meet at Jamaica National Stadium in Kingston on Friday, September 22 for the first leg, before heading to Canada for the return leg on Tuesday, September 26 at BMO Field in Toronto. Both matches can be watched live on OneSoccer.

“I’m excited to get this roster together and get after the next chapter for this team,” Priestman said in a press release. “We all are itching to get back on the pitch and be together and want nothing more than to start our 2024 Olympic Journey and solidify that in front of a home crowd in Toronto.”

Canada head coach Bev Priestman ahead of a match at Tokyo 2020. (Photo: Canada Soccer by Daniela Porcelli)

The two countries have played each other nine times since 1991, with Canada winning all nine of them. The most recent meeting was in the semifinals of the Concacaf W Championship, where Canada came away with a 3-0 victory with goals from Jessie Fleming, Allysha Chapman, and Adriana Leon. The previous meeting came in qualifying for the last Olympics, with Canada dismantling Jamaica 9-0, including five goals from Jordyn Huitema.

As the winners of the aforementioned Concacaf W Championship, the United States have already locked in their spot as one of the two Concacaf representatives in Paris. By finishing second and third, respectively, Canada and Jamaica have to battle it out for the other spot.

Full Canada squad:

GK- Sabrina D’Angelo | ENG / Arsenal FC
GK- Lysianne Proulx | POR / SCU Torreense
GK- Kailen Sheridan | USA / San Diego Wave FC
CB- Kadeisha Buchanan | ENG / Chelsea FC
CB- Vanessa Gilles | FRA / FCF Olympique Lyonnais
CB- Shelina Zadorsky | ENG / Tottenham Hotspur
CB/FB- Sydney Collins | USA / NC Courage
CB/FB- Jade Rose | USA / Harvard University
FB- Gabrielle Carle | USA / Washington Spirit
FB- Ashley Lawrence | ENG / Chelsea FC
FB- Jayde Riviere | ENG / Manchester United FC
FB- Bianca St-Georges | USA / Chicago Red Stars
M- Marie-Yasmine Alidou D’Anjou | POR / SL Benfica
M- Simi Awujo | USA / University of Southern California
M- Jessie Fleming | ENG / Chelsea FC
M- Julia Grosso | ITA / Juventus FC
M- Quinn | USA / OL Reign
M/F- Olivia Smith | POR / Sporting CP
F- Jordyn Huitema | USA / OL Reign
F- Cloé Lacasse | ENG / Arsenal FC
F- Adriana Leon | ENG / Manchester United FC
F- Nichelle Prince | USA / Houston Dash
F- Deanne Rose | ENG / Leicester City FC
F- Christine Sinclair | USA / Portland Thorns FC
F- Evelyne Viens | ITA / AS Roma