Australia name preliminary 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup squad


Canberra, June 19 (IANS) Australia national women’s football head coach Tony Gustavsson on Monday named a provisional squad for the FIFA Women’s World Cup.

Gustavsson announced a 29-player squad who will participate in the Matildas’ final preparations for the World Cup in Australia and New Zealand before the squad is cut down to 23 in July.

The training camp will give some injured players an opportunity to prove their fitness before the final squad is named, a Xinhua report said.

Star players Sam Kerr, Steph Catley, Ellie Carpenter and Caitlin Foord are all in the squad following long club seasons in Europe.

“From the first day of our first training session in 2021, we said it would take 23 in 23 for the FIFA Women’s World Cup and everyone would have a role to play in that journey,” Gustavsson said.

“What we have seen is that it has actually taken more than 23 players to bring us to this moment, and for that reason I am thrilled to work with the players named in this provisional squad during the final phase of our preparation.

“I have been impressed by their full commitment at every step, and now we have the chance to fine tune and solidify our game plan ahead of a phenomenally exciting couple of weeks.”

The Matildas will open their World Cup campaign against Ireland in Sydney on July 20, before facing Nigeria on July 27 in Brisbane and Canada on July 31 in Melbourne.

Only the top two teams from eight groups will enter the round of 16, as this is the first time that women’s football’s biggest tournament will expand to a 32-team format.

China, having clinched the Asian Cup last year, are placed in Group D with England, Denmark and Haiti for the tournament, which will be held between July 20 to August 20.

Prior to the landmark tournament on home soil, Australia will face fifth-ranked France in a warm-up match on July 14.



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