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Olivia Smith: A Prominent CanWNT Teenager Midfielder

CanWNT Midfielder, Olivia Smith Celebrates Goal With Deanne Rose

The 5’4” midfielder and forward (seen on the right of the main photo), who currently plays for Portuguese club, Sporting CP, was born on August 5, 2004, in North York, Ontario, Canada, and was brought up in Whitby. Smith is only 19 years old, however in that small time, she has been able to make a mark with the CanWNT, as she can play both the forward and the midfielder positions.

Olivia Smith: A Young and Rising CanWNT Teenager Midfielder

Olivia Smith Childhood

Smith’s mother was born in Toronto, while her father was born in Oshawa. According to Canada Soccer, Smith’s sports growing up included soccer, basketball, volleyball, taekwondo, and track and field.

Some of her idols/teams growing up included Carli Lloyd, Marta, Usain Bolt, and the Toronto Raptors.

Smith first played with the Whitby Soccer Club, then played competitively with other teams like Oshawa Kicks FC, Ajax SC, Markham FC, North Toronto SC, and the Ontario Regional Excel (REX) program.

Penn State University (2022)

Smith played one year in Penn State University. This is what Smith said about playing in Penn State (Go PSU Sports):

“I chose Penn State because of the amazing coaching staff and team they have here. Coaches have a clear vision of where they want to be and how they are going to get there. Coach Dambach played the ultimate role in my decision to transfer to Penn State.”

Erica Dambach is an accomplished head coach, who has more than two decades of coaching experience at the collegiate level. This included winning the 2015 NCAA Championship.

Smith only played one year of college, as she delivered one assist and one goal. After that, she decided to become a pro and went to play for Sporting CP.

Semi-Professional/Professional Career

North Toronto Nitros (2022)

To understand Smith’s professional career, one must also understand Smith’s time at the North Toronto Nitros, which plays in the League1 Ontario women’s division. She made a name for herself there as she scored 18 goals in only 11 appearances.

It also seems that Smith became a better player because of the North Toronto Nitros. This is what she said about the experience in League1 Ontario (source: North Toronto Soccer):

“My soccer IQ and technique are the two biggest things that NT really helped me with. Our practices and the system we play in allow players to really show who they are, on and off the ball. It enables us to be creative and play with freedom while also improving constantly because of how fast-paced everything is.”

READ MORE: Vanessa Gilles: The CanWNT’s Dependable Centre-Back

She is one of only two players that came from the League1 Ontario players that made the SheBelieves Cup roster in 2024. The other is Vanessa Gilles, who played for West Ottawa in 2017. Unfortunately, for Smith, she was unable to play in the SheBelieves Cup because of an injury.

Sporting CP (2023 – Present)

What might be more remarkable about Smith is her form and performances with Sporting CP. This included scoring two goals this past week in a 4-1 win over FC Famalicao.

The season is still early, but Smith is making her mark with the club, and as a result, and her form has helped her get on the Concacaf W Gold Cup and SheBelieves Cup rosters.

CanWNT (2019-Present)

Smith became the youngest player to ever debut for the national team as she came as a late substitute against Brazil in the 2019 Women’s International Tournament. At that time, she was 15 years-old and 94 days old, with the previous youngest player being Kara Lang at 15 years-old and 132 days old.

The teenager continues to make her name as she was part of the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup squad at only 18-years-old. This is what CanWNT head coach, Beverly Priestman, said about Smith (source: Tom Nightingale of Canadian Soccer Daily):

“Olivia is a big talent,” CanWNT head coach Priestman said before CanWNT’s first-leg win against Jamaica in September. “She feels a bit fearless and that’s what we need… she arguably could’ve featured more than she did at the World Cup. She’s a massive part of the future. She’s now pro and it’s only going to go up from here.”

Smith scored her first-ever international goal in a dominant win over El Salvador. She would later score again against Paraguay and also earned an assist against Costa Rica in the group stage in the Concacaf W Gold Cup. As a result, she earned the 2024 Concacaf W Gold Cup Young Player of the Tournament.

Olivia Smith Has a Bright Future

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Smith is a fantastic talent and a player that everyone has a lot of praise of. The player not just scores her own goals, but creates goals for others as well, which is very rare for a player so young with the senior national team. Despite her being absent from the SheBelieves Cup because of an injury, the future is bright for Smith.


Photo Credit: Maria Lysaker-USA TODAY Sports, of a Deanne Rose Headshot and an Olivia Smith Headshot, on February 25, 2024.


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