Canada ready for 2012 CONCACAF w17 kick off
Posted on 1 May 2012 in FIFA U-17 Women's World Cup
Canada will open the 2012 CONCACAF Women's Under-17 Championship on Wednesday 2 May against Panama in Ciudad de Guatemala. The Canada-Panama U-17 match kicks off the eight-team, 11-day tournament at Estadio Cementos Progreso, with teams chasing three qualification spots to the FIFA U-17 Women's World Cup Azerbaijan 2012.
The Canada-Panama match (14.00 local) will be followed by the Guatemala-Jamaica group match (16.30 local), also from Group A action. All CONCACAF matches will be broadcast live on CONCACAF.com, with Wednesday's first match to kick off at 16.00 ET / 13.00 PT. Fans can also follow the action via Canada Soccer's social media platforms on Twitter, Facebook and Flickr (as well as a full post-match report on CanadaSoccer.com).
"Our first task will be to qualify for the FIFA U-17 Women's World Cup," said Canadian U-17 coach Bryan Rosenfeld. "We're sticking to that as the number one priority."
Canada trained at the Estadio Cementos Progreso for the first time on Tuesday 30 April 2012. As per the custom on Match Day One (Official Training), the team was given a precise one hour on the pitch. The stadium is home to CSD Comunicaciones, a Guatemala professional team that has twice featured in CONCACAF Champions League in the last four years. The stadium features an artificial turf field (it had been natural grass until 2010).
CONCACAF has appointed Mexican referee Quetzalli Alvarado to handle the opening match. Already this year, Alvarado has officiated the championship final of both the CONCACAF Women's Olympic Qualifying tournament (in Vancouver, BC) and CONCACAF Women's Under-20 Championship (in Ciudad Panama).
Three teams from CONCACAF will qualify for the FIFA U-17 Women's World Cup Azerbaijan 2012, which runs 22 September to 13 October. Along with the three CONCACAF teams, the 16-team tournament will qualify three teams from Asia (China PR, Japan and Korea DPR), three teams from Africa (Gambia, Ghana and Nigeria), one team from Oceania (New Zealand), three teams from South America (Brazil, Colombia and Uruguay), host Azerbaijan and two more teams from Europe (to be determined in late June).
Canada has participated in both previous editions of the FIFA U-17 Women's World Cup (New Zealand 2008 and Trinidad and Tobago 2010). Canada has also won three CONCACAF women's youth titles, with two won at the Under-20 level (2004 and 2008) and one won at the Under-17 level (2010).