USWNT Neighbor Watch: Canada at the Cyprus Cup – No Three-Peat

The Canadian Women’s National Team recently participated in the Cyprus Cup, where they won all three of their group matches, but fell to France 0:2 in the final. Notably, during the tournament, Christine Sinclair scored her 130th and 131st international goals, moving her ahead of the USWNT’er Kristine Lilly, who has 130 career international goals.

[Also, Canada recently announced a trio of friendlies in preparation for the Olympics: Brazil (March 24th, Gillette Stadium, outside of Boston, USA); Sweden (March 31st; in Sweden); and China (May 30th, News Brunswick). Here’s the AllWhiteKit.com write-up on these friendlies, with source links to CanadaSoccer.com.]

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Canada’s Cyprus Cup roster (CanadaSoccer.com) included all but one player from Olympic Qualifying: midfielder Alyscha Mottershead (Syracuse University). The three players not in Vancouver were goalkeeper Stephanie Labbé, centerback Emily Zurrer and outside-back Bryanna McCarthy.

Prior to leaving for the Cyprus Cup, 26 players were called into a camp (CanadaSoccer.com). The four players who did not make the final cut were Mottershead plus Tiffany Cameron (Ohio State University); Marie-Eve Nault (Ottawa Fury); and Ranee Premji (Vancouver Whitecaps FC) .

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CANADA’S 2012 CYPRUS CUP ROSTER

Goalkeepers: Stephanie Labbé (Piteå IF, SWE); Karina LeBlanc (unattached); Erin McLeod (Dalsjöfors G.o.I.F., SWE)

Centerbacks: Candace Chapman (Unattached); Carmelina Moscato (Piteå IF, SWE); Shannon Woeller (Rutgers University); Emily Zurrer (Dalsjöfors G.o.I.F., SWE);

Fullbacks (Outside): Melanie Booth (Vancouver Whitecaps FC); Robyn Gayle (Vancouver Whitecaps FC); Bryanna McCarthy (West Virginia University); Lauren Sesselmann (unattached); Chelsea Stewart (UCLA); Rhian Wilkinson (Lillestrøm SK Kvinner, NOR)

Midfielders: Kaylyn Kyle (Vancouver Whitecaps FC); Kelly Parker (unattached); Sophie Schmidt (unattached); Desiree Scott (Vancouver Whitecaps FC); Brittany Timko (unattached)

Forwards: Chelsea Buckland (Oregon State University); Christina Julien (Jitex BK, SWE); Christine Sinclair (unattached); Melissa Tancredi (Piteå IF, SWE)

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CANADA’S CYPRUS CUP MATCHES

Canada was in Group B with Scotland, Italy, and the Netherlands.

Canada 5, Scotland 1. Canada scored early via a Kelly Parker goal (6′), but Scotland got an equalizer seven minutes later. Sophie Schmidt scored the next two goals, and, thus her  her first senior international brace (36′, 51′). Fourteen minutes into the second-half, Christine Sinclair got her 130th international goal (59′), Melissa Tancredi added Canada’s final goal in the 64th minute. See also: CanadaSoccer.com match report; Scottish FA match report.

Canada 2, Italy 1. The match was scoreless until the 43rd minute when Shannon Woeller sent a long pass to Christine Sinclair, who rushed toward goal and chipped a shot over Italy’s ‘keeper for her 131st international goal.

After the half-time interval, Italy got a quick equalizer (46′) when Rhian Wilkinson’s pass was intercepted and two Italian players combined for a goal. For the rest of the regulation, the scoreline remained the same. Three or four minutes into stoppage time, Sinclair crossed a pass into Italy’s penalty box, which was headed down by Chelsea Buckland and rolled past Kaylyn Kyle, who was tangled up with and may or may not have fouled an Italian defender. (The brief FIGC news blurb for this match mentions a foul not seen by the referee.) In the end, substitute Robyn Gayle ran on the ball and knocked it home for the game-winner. See also: CanadaSoccer.com match report.

Canada 1, Netherlands 0. Canada had more of the possession in the match, but had few chances during the first-half. Canada was able to put together more opportunities in the second-half. In the 84th minute, Canada earned a free kick deep in the Netherland’s half. Sophie Schmidt delivered that kick and Emily Zurrer headed the ball into the net for the match’s only goal. See also: CanadaSoccer.com match report; Onsoranje.nl write-up (in Dutch, video is geo-blocked).

Canada 0, France 2. By finishing atop Group B, Canada returned to the Cyprus Cup final, hoping to win its third-straight Cyprus Cup. Their opponent was France, who had dispatched Canada 4:0 in a 2011 Women’s World Cup group match.

The first goal came in the 31st minute, after France’s Gaëtane Thiney dispossessed Desiree Scott. France’s Marie-Laure Delie latched onto the loose ball, dribbled toward goal, and powered in a shot from sixteen yards out.

The second goal was scored on a penalty kick by Louisa Necib in the 62 minute after veteran Swedish referee Jenny Palmqvist “judged that Rhian Wilkinson brought down Sonia Bompastor.”

See also: CanadaSoccer.com match report; FFF.fr play-by-play account (in French); CanadaSoccerTV highlight video (embedded below); AllWhiteKit.com write-up on the final.

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TABLE: MINUTES PLAYED, CANADIAN WNT, 2012 CYPRUS CUP

Player              P.  SCO  ITA  NED  FRA   Total
Erin McLeod         GK    0    0   90   90     180
Stephanie Labbé     GK   90    0    0    0      90
Karina LeBlanc      GK    0   90    0    0      90
Candace Chapman     CB   90   90   90   90     360
Carmelina Moscato   CB   90    0    0   90     180
Shannon Woeller     CB    0   90    0    0      90
Emily Zurrer        CB    0    0   90    0      90
Rhian Wilkinson     FB   90   72   90   90     342
Lauren Sesselmann   FB   45    0   73   60     178
Chelsea Stewart     FB    0   33   17   30      80
Bryanna McCarthy    FB    0   57    0    0      57
Melanie Booth       FB   45    0    0    0      45
Robyn Gayle         FB    0   18    0    0      18
Desiree Scott       MF   90   90   90   90     360
Sophie Schmidt      MF   77   90   37   90     294
Kelly Parker        MF   66   82   62   45     255
Kaylyn Kyle         MF   13    8   28   87     136
Brittany Timko      MF   24   24   53    3     104
Christine Sinclair  FW   90   90   90   90     360
Melissa Tancredi    FW   90   79   90   73     332
Christina Julien    FW   77   66   37   45     225
Chelsea Buckland    FW   13   11   53   17      94

Data Source: CanadaSoccer.com match reports (linked above)