Canada kicked off the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup Jordan 2016 with a come-from-behind 3:2 win over Cameroon. Down a goal at the break, Canada scored twice in the last 15 minutes to earn three points on the opening day of the competition.
Jordyn Huitema was the early goalscorer for Canada before Soline Djoubi and Claudia Dabda made it 2-1 for Cameroon after 45 minutes. Sarah Stratigakis then scored the equaliser on a 78th minute penalty before Hannah Taylor headed home the winner in the 83rd minute. With the win, Canada sit in first place in Group B ahead of second-place Germany who won 2:1 over Venezuela on the opening day.
“It was a real Canadian gritty performance right to the end,” said Bev Humphries-Priestman, Canada Soccer’s Women’s National U-17 Team Coach. “We knew it wasn’t going to be easy against such a physical team like Cameroon, but we are really proud of our team.
“It was such a roller coaster game, but that is only going to help the team learn and move forward in their journey towards the Women’s National Team as well as move forward in this tournament.”
Canada’s second group match is Monday 3 October against Germany at the Amman International Stadium. The match will be broadcast live on TSN1, TSN4, and RDS at 12.00 ET / 09.00 PT (19.00 local kick off). Canada will then face Venezuela on Friday 7 October at the King Abdullah II International Stadium (19.00 local / 12.00 ET / 09.00 PT on TSN1, TSN4, and RDS).
3′ Jordyn Huitema – Canada wasted no time getting on the board, Jordyn Huitema scoring three minutes into the game and getting Canada off to a flying start in the tournament. Anyssa Ibrahim was driving through the midfield before slipping a through ball behind the defence for Huitema to chase. She was behind the defence and was able to catch the goalkeeper out of position, neatly finishing into the bottom left corner.
17′ Soli Djoubi (free kick) – Cameroon levelled the game in the 17th minute in unusual circumstances. Marissa Zuchetto was judged to have picked up a pass directly from a teammate, after which the referee awarded an indirect free kick in the penalty area for the back-pass. The ball was teed up for Solie Djoubi who drove it in hard and low, levelling the score at 1-1.
42′ Claudia Dabda – Cameroon raced up the other end of the field to take the lead in the game. The counter attack down the right flank was initially well defended, and the ball fell to Claudia Dabda on the edge of the area. Her first shot was blocked by Kaela Hansen, but Dabda was able to collect the rebound and drive into the penalty area, her low shot just beating Zuchetto in the Canadian net.
78′ Sarah Stratigakis (penalty) – Canada won a penalty after substitute Lauren Raimondo, running onto a through ball at the top of the box, was taken down by goalkeeper Carole Mimboe. The Canadian captain Stratigakis stepped up to take the spot kick and placed it coolly into the top right corner, tying the scores at 2-2.
83′ Hannah Taylor – The Canadian midfield combined well in the 82nd minute moving the ball quickly and concisely up through the centre of the field. The ball was nicked off the toes of the Kats, who was breaking into the area, and subsequently put out for a corner. Juila Grosso sent the ball in and it was met forcefully by Hannah Taylor, who did well to arc her neck around the curve of the ball and send a header on target. It wasn’t dealt with by Mimboe and Canada re-took the lead in the game in the 83rd minute, the score sitting at 3-2.
Canada’s starting XI featured Marissa Zucchetto in goal, Emma Regan at right back, Hannah Taylor and Ashley Cathro at centre back, Julia Grosso at left back, and Sarah Stratigakis, Kaela Hansen, Anyssa Ibrahim, Deanne Rose, Jordyn Huitema, and Florence Laroche from the midfield up through to the attack.
In the second half, coach Bev Humphries-Priestman replaced Ibrahim with Vital Kats (46′), Florence Laroche with Mikaela Dayes (59′), and Huitema with Lauren Raimondo (75′).
Canada Soccer’s Women’s EXCEL Program
The FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup Jordan 2016 runs 30 September to 21 October, with the 32 matches to be played at four stadiums in Amman, Ibid, and Al Zarqa. From 16 nations, eight will advance to the group phase to reach the Quarter-finals, where Canada have landed three times in four previous trips.
Since 2002, Canada have participated in 11 of 12 FIFA women’s youth final competitions (U-17 to U-20), including six trips to the Quarter-finals and one silver medal at Canada 2002. Canada have also won four CONCACAF women’s youth championships, with titles at the U-20 level (2004, 2008), U-17 level (2010), and U-15 level (2014).
From 2014-16, Canada is the only nation in the world with top eight results in all four women’s international competitions: the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup Costa Rica 2014, FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup Canada 2014, FIFA Women’s World Cup Canada 2015, and Rio 2016 Women’s Olympic Football Tournament.
Canada’s Jordan 2016 roster features players born 1999 or later as part of Canada Soccer’s Women’s EXCEL Program. Beyond this year, players born in 1999 are eligible for CONCACAF and FIFA U-20 competitions in 2018 while players born in 2000 or 2001 are eligible for CONCACAF and FIFA U-20 competitions in 2018 and 2020.
Canada Soccer’s Women’s EXCEL Program, presented by Bell, brings together the best with the best at the national youth level. Operating across the U-14 to U-17 and U-18 to U-23 age groups, the program delivers an aligned talent structure and system that progresses more top players to Canada’s Women’s National Team.