Canada have taken a 2-0 lead in their 2023 Concacaf W Olympic Play-In series after the opening leg away win in Kingston, Jamaica. With the return leg scheduled for Tuesday in Toronto, Canada are just 90 minutes away from their fifth-consecutive qualification to the Olympic Games.
Nichelle Prince and Adriana Leon were the Canada goalscorers in the opening leg while Kailen Sheridan posted the clean sheet with the help of her backline. The away match (and win) was Canada’s first-ever in Jamaica and their first in the Caribbean region since 1991. It was also Canada’s second-straight win and clean sheet against Jamaica under the leadership of Head Coach Bev Priestman.
“The job is only half done and with the Olympic Games on the line, we have to be ready because the second match is going to be just as difficult to get a result,” said Bev Priestman, Canada Soccer’s Women’s National Team Head Coach.
Canada’s upcoming Tuesday home leg will be played in front of a sold-out crowd in Toronto with a live broadcast on OneSoccer starting at 19.00 ET / 16.00 PT (19.00 local). OneSoccer is available on the fuboTV Canada platform, as a linear channel on Telus’s Optik TV (Channel 980), as well as online at OneSoccer.ca and through the OneSoccer app. Fans will find extended coverage across Canada Soccer’s digital channels on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube featuring the hashtag #CANWNT.
In the Friday night win, Prince opened the scoring on a header after a wonderful cross from Ashley Lawrence on the right side. The goal was scored after a steady build-up play that started with a Lawrence throw in, passed through six other Canadian players back and forth across the pitch, and then ended with the Prince header from inside the six-yard box.
Before the second goal, Canada hit the post once in the first half and then again early in the second half. Jamaica’s best chance came in the 67th minute on an attempt by substitute Tiffany Cameron that sailed over the bar.
Leon, who was making her 100th career international “A” appearance, scored the second goal in the 93rd minute with an assist from Gabrielle Carle. The play started with a Shelina Zadorsky ball forward that was controled by Jordyn Huitema, moved ahead by Julia Grosso, and then crossed into the box by Carle.
From the two-match Canada-Jamaica series, the nation that scores the most goals across two matches will qualify for the Paris 2024 Olympic Games. If both nations have scored the same number of goals, then the nation with the most away goals will advance as the series winner. If both nations are tied on goals scored and tied on away goals, then 30 minutes of extra time will be played and, if necessary, potentially kicks from the penalty mark to decide the series winner.
So far, only four nations have qualified for the Paris 2024 Women’s Olympic Football Tournament: hosts France, Concacaf champions USA, and CONMEBOL’s top-two nations Brazil and Colombia. Unlike the Men’s Football Tournament which features 16 nations, only 12 nations will qualify for the Women’s Olympic Football Tournament which means that only the one spot remains for a Concacaf nation.