Canada ready to face rivals USA in Tokyo 2020 Semi-finals

#CANWNT #RiseHigher #Tokyo2020

Canada is ready to face the reigning world champions USA when the two sides meet in the Women’s Olympic Football Tournament Semi-finals on Monday in Kashima, Japan. In a rematch of their infamous London 2012 Semi-finals match and a spot in the Tokyo 2020 Gold Medal match on the line, Canada will look to remain undefeated and continue their positive momentum after a win on penalty kicks over Brazil in the Olympic Quarter-finals.
 
Canada will play USA in their Semi-finals match in Kashima on Monday 2 August at 17.00 local (04.00 ET / 01.00 PT) with a live broadcast on CBC.ca. From the Olympic Semi-finals, the winners advance to the Gold Medal Final in Tokyo on 6 August, while the losing teams will be playing for a Bronze Medal in Kashima on 5 August.

“I’m excited for this match,” said Canada Soccer’s Women’s National Team Head Coach Bev Priestman. “Of course, there is the Canada-USA rivalry that is driving this group, but more importantly, this is the game that will help us change the colour of the medal, and I think this is what motivates the group more than anything. The players want to change the game in Canada like they did when they won their first Bronze Medal, and that is enough for this group to go and put out a performance that players didn’t think they had.”

Of note, Head Coach Bev Priestman will be the only female Head Coach leading their team in the Semi-finals and this will mark her first Women’s Olympic Football Tournament Semi-finals having served as an Assistant Coach with Canada when they won their Bronze Medal at Rio 2016.
 
Canada have played the USA 61 times since 1986, most recently in the opening match of the SheBelieves Cup in February 2021 which ended up in a narrow 1:0 win for USA. Canada also faced USA in a home-and-away friendly in 2017, that saw Canada draw the reigning FIFA Women’s World Cup Champions 1-1 on home soil in Vancouver before falling 3:1 in San Jose in the return leg.
 
When Canada faced USA in the Semi-finals of the Women’s Olympic Football Tournament, Captain Christine Sinclair scored a legendary hat trick during the match while a record average audience of 2.4 million viewers watched the moment on TSN. The country stopped, held its breath and cheered Canada to the Bronze Medal three days later..
 
“All of us remember that 2012 match, it was a pretty incredible moment for Canadian soccer,” said Canadian midfielder Desiree Scott. “But our team is completely different now. We developed as a program, the brand of soccer that we play has really evolved. We are a more confident group, and I think our edge will come from the belief that we have in ourselves. In 2012 we were hopeful that we could get to the Final, but now we believe in what we can do on a soccer pitch, and we truly believe that we can get to the Gold Medal match.”
 
Canada remains undefeated at Tokyo 2020 and this marks the third consecutive time that Canada has advanced to the Women’s Olympic Football Tournament Semi-finals. Canada is the only nation in the world to reach the podium at both London 2012 and Rio 2016 in women’s football. The team is hoping to make history by getting back on the podium for a third consecutive time.
 
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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