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FIFA Women’s World Cup: Multiple Injuries Threaten Canada’s Chances 


FIFA Women’s World Cup: Multiple Injuries Threaten Canada’s Chances

By Jennifer S. Kuwanta

With just 99 days left to the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup, Canada is left with several question marks across the squad as a glut of players are left injured

The team’s Head Coach, Bev Priestman, told reporters that the situation was worrying.

The sixth-ranked Olympic champions lost 1-2 to fifth-ranked France in their friendly in Le Mans on Tuesday, a match that was a key part of their preparations for the FIFA Women’s World Cup in Australia and New Zealand.

At the Mundial, they are billed to face co-hosts Australia, nine-time African champions Nigeria and Ireland.

Several veterans were missing from the match though, including midfielders Desiree Scott and Quinn, centre-back Kadeisha Buchanan and forward Janine Beckie.

Beckie was ruled out of the quadrennial tournament after suffering an anterior cruciate ligament injury last month.

“In many ways as a coach you would like to get rid of the clutter early. I don’t have that luxury,” said Priestman.

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“I’ll be probably taking an extended group into the preparation camp and making a call from there because of the timelines on some of the injuries that we’ve got.

Priestman said she would keep a close eye on upcoming National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL) games and the rest of the European season.

“I have to try and get the best team possible to Australia and New Zealand,” she said.

“(Planning) with and without some very critical players who, you know, did get us on the podium and have a massive amount of caps and experience.”

France, playing only their second match since Herve Renard was named head coach last month, scored minutes into the second half with a header by Grace Geyoro.

Then, substitute Lea Le Garrec added to their lead with a shot from outside the penalty box.

OL Reign forward Jordyn Huitema scored for Canada minutes later with a shot into the bottom right corner.

“We’ve stretched ourselves and we’ve been stretched with the absences we’ve had,” said Priestman, pointing to the level of competition France brought along with recent opponents at the SheBelieves Cup —- Japan, Brazil and the U.S.

“I’m just so glad we’re learning these lessons now.”

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