Canada faces England today, trying to advance to the semifinals of its own tournament, as the 2015 Women’s World Cup continues in Vancouver.
“We’re having a great tournament as a group,” said head coach John Herdman, who’ll lead the undefeated Canadians into battle against his home country. “Every goal we’ve scored, the player goes to the bench, and you look at the passion and the spirit and the connectedness on the players that are playing.
“We know that there’s young girls out there watching these players, aspiring to be the next (Christine) Sinclair, (Sophie) Schmidt, (Desiree) Scott, whoever. So I think the key is just coming back to the team, focusing on the team, doing their jobs and knowing through their hard work what it’s going to do for their country.”
Today’s win would be a massive step for Canadian soccer, seeing the women move into the final four of a much-anticipated, hosted World Cup. And to beat England – a longtime global football powerhouse – would be special, with the winner joining Germany, the United States, and either Japan or Australia in the semis.
“You’re not meant to have fun,” said Herdman. “I mean, you climb Everest – it hurts, it’s painful, we’re now in the death zone where the oxygens thinner. You know, it’s not meant to be fun. But when we look back, that’s where we’ll reflect and go, ‘Wow, what an achievement, you know, what we’ve done for a country.'”
Kick-off is set for 4:30 p.m. Pacific Time, at BC Place in Vancouver.
Australia and Japan will being play at 2:00 p.m. in Edmonton’s Commonwealth Stadium.