As the 2003 Women’s World Cup soccer tournament draws closer Canada’s team is about to play their final three international friendly games. This is the last chance for soccer fans to attend a game in Canada before the team leaves for the tournament which is being held in the United States. The next game is Canada vs. Mexico in Edmonton on August 31, followed by Canada vs. Mexico in Vancouver on September 4 and the final game, which is Canada vs. Australia in Kingston, Ontario on September 14. According to the Kingston Whig Standard, the city of Kingston is very excited to have the team play there because they usually do not get major sporting events due to their small size and that it also “might be the first time the full team will be together.”
2003 Women’s World Cup
Once Canada’s team is finished their friendly matches they will be off to the United States to begin the actual tournament. The tournament consists of 16 teams competing in 4 groupings. The groups were drawn in July and are as follows:
Canada’s first game will be against Germany on September 20 in Columbus. This could be a tough match for Canada who lost 7-0 and 3-0 to Germany the last time they played each other in international friendly games in June 2001. Germany is also ranked number 3 in the FIFA Women’s World Rankings for 2003 while Canada is ranked number 12. Canada’s second game will be against Argentina in Columbus on September 24 and their final game is against Japan in Boston on September 27. If they advance in their group they will proceed to play either the winner or runner up from Group D in Portland on October 2. After that the semi-finals are scheduled for October 5 in Portland and the final for October 12 in Los Angeles.
Background of Canada’s Team
This will be the third consecutive World Cup that the Canadian Women’s team has qualified for. The team first qualified for the 1995 Women’s World Cup in Sweden where they failed to advance past the first stage. They lost to England and Norway and tied with Nigeria. In 1999 they qualified once again for the World Cup in the United States. Unfortunately they failed to advance again with losses to Russia and Norway and a tie with Japan.
The Canadian team is equipped with a new coach from Norway named Even Pellerud who joined the team in 1999. They also have 8 new players who have not played in a World Cup Tournament with the team. The team has been doing well in their international friendly games so hopefully we will see them advance to the second stage this year. I urge all Canadian soccer fans to attend as many games as possible and cheer our team on through the tournament. If you would like more information on the Canadian Women’s World Cup team visit the Canadian Soccer Association’s website at http://www.canadasoccer.com.