CanWNT SheBelieves Cup Roster Starts Play on Thursday

CanWNT’s Adriana Leon Celebrates Second Goal Against Australia With Teammates Five Months Before the 2023 SheBelieves Cup

ANALYSIS – The CanWNT SheBelieves Cup Roster was revealed yesterday. There were some notable names like Janine Beckie and Christine Sinclair, but also some players that missed the cut.

The CanWNT SheBelieves Cup Roster Revealed for the Prestigious 2023 SheBelieves Cup

Notable Players

Adriana Leon, the 30-year-old winger for Manchester United is Canada’s most dangerous offensive weapon. She has scored four goals in her last six games for the national team. This includes scoring three goals in two games against Australia and one goal against Brazil in a 2-1 win. Beverly Priestman said this about Leon in a Sportsnet interview after the two games against Australia.

“A player scoring three goals against that type of opposition for Canada is not something as a head coach, you can ignore,” Beverly Priestman said. “Adriana does things in the game that you are on the sidelines, you get excited, I think the fans get excited because she’s different and she brings something different to the team.”

READ MORE: The CanWNT 2022 Year Review: A Year That Finished Off Strong

There is also Chelsea’s Jessie Fleming, who played a key role in Canada’s gold medal in Tokyo 2020. She can be a very important player for Canada in the SheBelieves Cup.

The thing to watch for is the chemistry between Christine Sinclair and Janine Beckie. Both players can create scoring chances for each other. This can clearly be shown in their Celebration Tour games against Nigeria, especially the game where they won 2-0 at BC Place. Also, both players currently play for the Portland Thorns in the NWSL, so they have played with each other not just with the national team, but also with the club team as well.

READ MORE: CanWNT makes history with first-ever Olympic gold medal

Goalkeeper, Kailen Sheridan, is another player to watch for. Sheridan was named the Best Goalkeeper of the Tournament in the Concacaf W Championship, including a fantastic performance against the USWNT in the Concacaf W Championship Final. Beverly Priestman, head coach of the CanWNT, said this about Sheridan (source: Just Women’s Sports):

“Kailen [Sheridan] has shown that she’s ready,” said Canada head coach Bev Priestman, who added that Sheridan has done a great job stepping into Stephanie Labbé’s shoes. “I thought she was fantastic, showed her leadership.”

Sheridan is one player to watch for in this tournament. There are also some players that did not make the cut. For example, the left-back of the Chicago Red Stars and the CanWNT, Bianca St-Georges, will be one of the players that are not on the roster. St-Georges has played seven games for the national team.

Beverly Priestman Press Conference

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Injuries

A member of the media asked questions in the media session to CanWNT head coach, Beverly Priestman, on the two injured players who will not be part of the SheBelieves Cup, Nichelle Prince, and Deanne Rose. This is what Priestman said:

“Yeah, so obviously two massive, massive players. And I think some of the players you’ve seen be brought into this pre-camper, you know, planning for without those players short term and how we get through the fixtures we’ve got but I think in general, you know, with these types of injuries ruptured Achilles, it’s, you know, it is a long term injury, but we are pushing hard to have them back for the World Cup.”

Priestman also said this about the progress of both players:

“Obviously, Deanne is a few months ahead of Nichelle based on when she did it. And by all accounts, both of those players are tracking really well.”

Rose and Prince are both speedsters that can create chances for their teammates. Rose also scored a critical penalty that helped them win Gold in the 2020 Summer Olympics. Prince has also been a standout in some of Canada’s games, including against the USWNT in the 2021 SheBelieves Cup.

In 73 games, Rose scored 10 goals since her debut in 2015 while Prince scored 13 goals in 90 games since her debut in 2013.

These two players will be greatly missed as everyone gets prepared for the SheBelieves Cup.

Beverly Priestman Excited About the Development of a Canada Pro Women’s Soccer League

READ MORE: Canada’s First Professional Women’s League Announced

There was exciting news about a pro women’s league, which Felipe Vallejo was able to cover for Last Word on Soccer. The author of this article, Raheem Bashir, asked Priestman what she thought of this new development:

“For those players to play week in and week out with some good players, I think the legal attract good players, it will really help us develop players quicker. Unfortunately, we don’t have the resources to get anywhere near the same level of youth contacts that any of the teams that we play against get. And so, it’ll accelerate the development of our best young players,” Priestman said. “But it’s also going to be a quick sounding board to scout and see some of the most prominent Canadian players.”

Priestman also talked about players coming to the end of their careers and sharing their experiences with the players. All of this is very exciting for the CanWNT, which desperately needs a new league. Other non-European countries like Japan and Australia have very recently started pro women’s leagues of their own with Wellington, New Zealand having a pro women’s soccer team in the Australian league.

CanWNT SheBelieves Cup Roster

READ MORE: Canada Women’s National Team Controversy Unpacked

It is an unfortunate situation as the CanWNT’s budget was cut this year heading into the FIFA World Cup. This is especially true when the FIFA Women’s World Cup is less than six months away and the 2023 SheBelieves Cup is just around the corner.

People might disagree with this, but the CanWNT is probably the most popular national team of any sport in Canada. They are the only country in the world to win an Olympic medal in women’s soccer in the last three Olympics. They also have household names on the team like Sinclair and Jessie Fleming.

Hopefully, they get support from Canada Soccer on this and this issue gets resolved sooner rather than later. It does not sound from the CanWNT’s soccer statement that this issue is over.

The CanWNT is going to face the USWNT on February 16 at 7:00 p.m. ET. That game in Orlando, Florida, will take place at Exploria Stadium. They will then play in Nashville, Tennessee at Geodis Park on February 19 at 6:30 p.m. ET against Brazil. Canada ends their 2023 SheBelieves Cup tournament with a game at 4:00 p.m. ET on February 22 in Frisco, Texas against Japan.

All three CanWNT games will be shown live on the subscription service, OneSoccer, and also on Telus.