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  • Writer's pictureElias Laradi

Soccer: Canada boosted by return of Beckie & Scott for She Believes Cup

Updated: 6 days ago

Jaedyn Shaw (#8) of the USA controls the ball as Canada's Vanessa Gilles is in pursuit
The United States and Canada will be back in action at the She Believes Cup in April (Photo Credit: CONCACAF)

On Thursday, Bev Priestman released her squad for the She Believes Cup, which will be contested on April 6th and 9th in Atlanta and Columbus.

After spending the majority recovering from their respective injuries both Janine Beckie and Desiree Scott return to international duty as Priestman continues her preparations for the Paris Olympics this summer.

The tournament features Brazil who are ranked 10, Japan who are 7th in the World and, the hosts the USA who are currently ranked fourth.

The last time we saw Scott put on the red jersey for Canada was when she played her 185th cap against Brazil in November 2022 in a 2-1 win over the Selecao.

Scott missed the NWSL season last year after suffering a knee injury while Beckie tore her ACL in a pre-season game last year and took the year to recover.

Both players aren’t slated to play but will continue with their respective return-to-play protocols and Priestman had nothing but praise for Beckie who played her first game in over a year scoring a brace in a 5-4 loss for the Portland Thorns last weekend.

Scott who plays for the Kansas City who earned that victory over Beckie and Portland is expected to play this weekend for KC after recently losing her mother.

'I think Janine's looked superb," Priestman told the media virtually on Thursday afternoon. She also spoke highly of the experienced veteran in Scott.

"There is the reality as to what she might have in the tank to come in. I know that. I know what I'm getting into with that," Priestman said. "But I also know what I'm getting with Desiree Scott." 

Canada will play a familiar opponent in Brazil on Saturday, April 6th in Atlanta while the US will face Japan in a semi-final type format. The winners will face each other three days later in Columbus while the two losers will play what is being called a third-place game.

While naming 23 players to her She Believes Cup roster Priestman will only be allowed to bring 18 players to France with four alternates with one being a goalkeeper making it even harder to come up with a winning line-up.

Canada was drawn into Group A along with host nation France, Colombia, and New Zealand. The French are ranked third in the FIFA World Rankings while Colombia is 23rd and New Zealand is ranked 28th.

Three players who will miss the exhibition tournament due to injury are Sydney Collins, Nichelle Prince, and Jayde Riviere but all three are still being considered for a potential Olympic roster.

Priestman mentioned during the availability that deciding her line-up for a potential Gold medal defense has given her headaches.

"We've got more depth than we've ever had," Priestman answered. "I think I've got real roster headaches."

The deadline for submitting a roster for the Olympic Tournament is July 3rd and despite the alternate situation, the rule stipulates that a player removed cannot return.

Canada is fresh off making it to the semi-finals of the 2024 inaugural W Gold Cup, losing to the US who hosted the tournament 3-1 in a shootout after the game finished tied at 2-2.

Adriana Leon won the Golden Boot leading the tournament with six goals while Olivia Smith won The Best Player Award and Jesse Fleming and Ashley Lawrence were named to the tournament's best XI.

Beckie joins a potent offense that includes Leon, Smith, Jordyn Huitema, Cloe Lacasse, Clarissa Larisey, Deanne Rose, and Evelyn Viens.

"For the forwards, those who've shown they can play across the front line or can wingback, they become more and more valuable in an 18-player roster," said Priestman.

"I don't know how I get that (number) down," she added. "Hopefully the SheBelieves (Cup) and the window in June will help me with that headache.

"It's a great place to be. Goals are coming from different places and people are on form, but it makes (selection) a lot harder, that's for sure."

The roster will feature nine players from the NWSL, 12 from Europe, and two from the NCAA. Canada currently has a record of 11-11-9 against Brazil and most recently played last fall in Montreal and Halifax with Brazil winning the game in Montreal 1-0 while Canada won 2-0 in Halifax. This will be the third time Canada makes an appearance at the She Believes Cup and last time around the team was dealing with a labor dispute with Canada Soccer and finished the tournament with a 1-2 record.

Canada's She Believes Cup Roster

GK- Sabrina D’Angelo | ENG / Arsenal FC ​ 

​​GK- Lysianne Proulx | USA / Bay FC ​ 

​​GK- Kailen Sheridan | USA / San Diego Wave FC ​ 

​​D- Kadeisha Buchanan | ENG / Chelsea FC ​ 

​​D- Gabrielle Carle | USA / Washington Spirit  

​​D- Vanessa Gilles | FRA / FCF Olympique Lyonnais ​ 

​​D- Ashley Lawrence | ENG / Chelsea FC ​ 

​D- Jade Rose | USA / Harvard University ​ 

​D- Bianca St-Georges | USA / North Carolina Courage 

​​D- Shelina Zadorsky | ENG / West Ham United FC ​ 

​M- Simi Awujo | USA / University of Southern California ​ 

​​M- Jessie Fleming | USA / Portland Thorns ​ 

​​M- Julia Grosso | ITA / Juventus FC ​ 

​​M- Quinn ​ | USA / Seattle Reign FC ​ 

​M- Desiree Scott | USA / Kansas City Current 

​​M/F- Olivia Smith | POR / Sporting CP ​ 

​F- Janine Beckie | USA / Portland Thorns  

​F- Jordyn Huitema | USA / Seattle Reign FC ​ ​ 

​​F- Cloé Lacasse | ENG / Arsenal FC ​ 

​​F- Clarissa Larisey | SWE / BK Häcken FF ​ 

​​F- Adriana Leon | ENG / Aston Villa WFC ​ 

​​F- Deanne Rose | ENG / Leicester City FC ​ 

​​F- Evelyne Viens | ITA / AS Roma 


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