Thursday, 24 April 2008

Canberrans to take on USA

Canberrans Amy Chapman, Caitlin Munoz, Lydia Williams and former local Sally Shipard are in the Matildas squad to take on America in two huge internationals, first one on Sunday in North Carolina.

Chappo, as Amy is known, has forced her way into the squad since the World Cup and will be hoping to get some game time.

The team flew out today, half their luck!

FFA Release below:


The Australian women's football team, the Matildas, are aiming to break their duck against the number one team in world football, the USA, according to captain Cheryl Salisbury.

Australia is yet to defeat the United States in 18 encounters, 16 of which have been losses.

"But we've come very close to beating them in our past two or three matches and hopefully the first breakthrough will happen on this tour," said Salisbury who has played in nearly all of Australia's matches against the USA.

"The players are excited to be together again . It's the first time we have gone away since the World Cup and we have the Asian Cup in Vietnam next month so this tour will give us great preparation."

"USA is the current Olympic champion and, with Beijing not far away, they will be going all out to put in a good performance."

The Australian team departed today and will face up to the perennial superpower of women's football on April 27 in Cary, North Carolina, and May 3 in Birmingham, Alabama.

"It is fantastic that there is so much interest from other nations in playing us," added Salisbury.

"Making the quarter finals of the World Cup really put us on the map and there are nations now chasing us for matches ."

Midfielder Heather Garriock, currently playing professionally with Danish Club Fortuna Hjorring, will be looking to become the youngest Australian , at age 25, to reach 100 caps in the first match against the United States.

The Sydneysider, who will meet up with the squad in the USA, is set to join the century club alongside team mates Salisbury and Joanne Peters, as well as retired defender Anissa Tann.

The Matildas squad for the United States tour is:

Goalkeepers – Melissa Barbieri (Melbourne), Lydia Williams (Canberra)
Defenders – Di Alagich (Sydney), Kim Carroll (Brisbane), Lauren Colthorpe (Brisbane), Kate McShea (Brisbane), Karla Reuter (Brisbane), Cheryl Salisbury (Newcastle), Clare Polkinghorne (Brisbane)
Midfielders – Joanne Burgess (Brisbane), Amy Chapman (Canberra), Heather Garriock (Sydney), Collette McCallum (Perth), Amber Neilson (Newcastle), Joanne Peters (Newcastle), Sally Shipard (Brisbane)
Forwards – Kate Gill (Newcastle), Caitlin Munoz (Canberra), Kyah Simon (Sydney), Sarah Walsh (Sydney)
(current home city)

The Matildas are preparing for the 2008 AFC Women's Asian Cup to be held from May 28 – June 8, 2008, in Vietnam.

Tour Fixtures:
Sunday, April 27
USA v Australia
WakeMed Soccer Park, Cary, Nth Carolina, 7pm local time (9am AEST Monday)

Saturday, May 3
USA v Australia
Legion Field, Birmingham, Alabama, 4pm local time (7am AEST Sunday)

The Matildas moved to an all-time high world ranking of 12 following the FIFA Women's World Cup, while the United States last month reclaimed their world number one ranking after their win in the 12-nation Algarve Cup.

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