For the second time over three days, the Canadian women’s national team was kept goalless in an international friendly. The competition on Monday was against Brazil, a team ranked seventh in the world by FIFA.
This was the last scheduled competition for head coach Bev Priestman’s squad before the Tokyo Olympics start in July and, in conjunction with Friday’s game against the Czech Republic, it was the players’ last chance in their effort to make the 18- Cracking Player List, Impressing Priestman is expected to give a name in the next 10 days.
The Canadian head coach made six changes to the team that started Friday, with Stephanie Labbe, Jayde Riviere, Gabrielle Carle, Vanessa Gilles, Sophie Schmidt and Adriana Leon leaving the line-up to make way for Kailen Sheridan, Allysha Chapman and Shelina Zadorsky, Qunn, Desiree Scott and Deanna Rose.
Unlike the game against the Czechs, the Brazilians didn’t sit back and get Canada to tear them apart as they too were aiming for victory in that game. This opened up the game more than the previous game, but Canada’s offense stuttered again.
The Canadians had their first chance of the game in the second minute when Deanne Rose found an open Ashley Lawrence in the penalty area, but the Paris St. Germain midfielder couldn’t get enough of the ball to disturb Brazilian goalkeeper Barbara.
The Brazilians also had their chance when Kailen Sheridan was tested by a long-range shot in the ninth minute, which luckily came straight at them.
Canada had a well-founded penalty scream in the 22nd minute after Christine Sinclair’s header ricocheted off a defender’s outstretched arm after a corner, but somehow both the referee and assistant referee missed an obvious penalty.
The chance of the game for Canada and the save of the game came in the 44th minute when Jessie Fleming uncorked an outside-18 shot designed to sneak under the bar before Barbara knocked it over.
Despite five second-half substitutions by Canada and four by the Brazilians, the score remained unchanged, with a Jordyn Huitema header on the post that came closest to a standstill.
This was the second time that the game ended 0-0 in as many friendly matches.
This is what Priestman said after the game:
“I thought it was a tremendous achievement by those on the pitch. I thought they gave absolutely everything and we looked more dangerous, we took a step forward, we just didn’t score, but I have to celebrate, ”said Bev Preistman, head coach of Canada Soccer women’s national team in a press release. “We conceded eight goals in the last three games against Brazil so we took a step forward, we were a tough team to beat and I think we messed them up.”
Although there was a huge line-up of 29 players in Spain, only 20 players saw the field of play. With that in mind, I think it’s fair to say that goalkeepers Sabrina D’Angelo, Erin McLeod, defenseman Jade Rose, center forward Jordyn Listro and Sarah Stratigakis, and striker Cloe Lacasse are having a hard time getting into the Olympic lineup as they did not appear in the two games. Manchester City’s Janine Beckie was also absent due to injury but will be on the squad if she is fit.
Although the Canadians couldn’t find the goal, the Canadians remained clean for their fourth game in a row and returned to their last encounter with Brazil on February 24 when they lost 2-0.
Canada’s next game is slated for July 21, 2021 against Olympic hosts Japan, however Priestman indicated the potential of playing a closed-door friendly before that. Canada will also face Chile and Great Britain in the group stage of the Olympics.