Ontario’s Diana Matheson notches 2, Diamond Simpson debuts
SÃO PAULO, Brazil — Canada picked right up where it left off, dominating Netherlands 5:0 in its opening match at the four nation Torneio Internacional Cidade de São Paulo competition on Thursday night in Brazil.
The match was Canada’s first since winning the 2010 CONCACAF Women’s Championship just four weeks earlier. Canadian stars Christine Sinclair and Diana Matheson each notched a pair of goals and Josee Belanger added one of her own in Canada’s comprehensive performance. Steph Labbé earned the clean sheet for Canada in only her third appearance for the national side.
Canadian Captain Sinclair scored the lone goal in the first half, converting the 109th goal of her international career in the 14th minute.
Entering the second half with a slender 1-0 advantage, Canada exploded for four second half goals. Seven minutes after the restart, Sinclair set-up Canada’s first goal of the half as she latched onto a great through ball before rounding the Netherlands goalkeeper and centering for a wide-open Josee Belanger to fire into the empty goal from 12 yards out.
Scoring a second goal early in the second half seemed to relax the Canadian side as it pinged passes around the pitch freely while ruthlessly attacking the tiring Dutch defence. Four minutes after doubling its advantage Canada earned a penalty kick and Matheson stepped up to calmly fire low to the goalkeeper’s left, giving Canada a three goal lead.
In the 66th minute Matheson scored her second of the match in superb fashion. Running onto the ball, Matheson struck a sweet left footed shot from 24 yards out which curled onto the far post on a bounce and into the Netherlands goal with the goalkeeper helpless to intervene. For Matheson, who has been playing in world class form, the goal was similar in quality, if differently executed, to the game winning goal she scored in Canada’s 1:0 victory over New Zealand in the 2010 Cyprus Cup final in March.
Sinclair put a bookend on the Canadian rout reacting quickly to a rebound from her own shot in the 75th minute and knocking it past the prone goalkeeper.
Canada will now prepare to face Mexico in its next match on Sunday 12 December. Sunday’s match will mark the third time the two CONCACAF rivals have played in the past five weeks. Canada won both of the previous meetings.
The two other teams at the competition, Mexico and Brazil, faced off immediately following the Canada-Netherlands match in Sao Paulo.
Carolina Morace’s starting eleven against Netherlands featured a 4-2-3-1 formation with Labbé in goal, Rhian Wilkinson, Carmelina Moscato, Emily Zurrer, and Marie-Eve Nault in defence, Matheson, Kaylyn Kyle, in holding midfield, and Belanger, Sinclair, and Christina Julien supporting Melissa Tancredi in attack.
Second half substitutes included Robyn Gayle, Chelsea Stewart, Amélia Pietrangelo, and Diamond Simpson. Both Pietrangelo and Simpson earned their first national team appearances in the win.
GK- Stephanie Labbé | SWE / Piteå IF | Stony Plain, AB, CAN
GK- Karina LeBlanc | USA / Chicago Red Stars | Maple Ridge, BC, CAN
GK- Erin McLeod | USA / Washington Freedom | Edmonton & Calgary, AB, CAN
GK- Sabrina D-Angelo| CAN / Toronto Lynx| Welland, ON, CAN
CB- Candace Chapman | Unattached / sans club | Ajax, ON, CAN
CB- Robyn Gayle | CAN / Vancouver Whitecaps FC | Mississauga, ON, CAN
CB- Shannon Woeller | USA / Rutgers University | Vancouver, BC, CAN
CB- Emily Zurrer | CAN / Vancouver Whitecaps FC | Crofton, BC, CAN
RB- Brittany Timko | Unattached / sans club | Coquitlam, BC, CAN
RB- Rhian Wilkinson | NOR / Lillestrøm SK Kvinner | Baie d’Urfe, QC, CAN
LB- Kara Lang | CAN / Vancouver Whitecaps FC | Oakville, ON, CAN
LB- Marie-Eve Nault | CAN / Ottawa Fury | Trois-Rivières, QC, CAN
M- Laura Chénard | CAN / Amiral de Québec | Ste-Luce, QC, CAN
M- Carmelina Moscato | Unattached / sans club | Mississauga, ON, CAN
M- Diana Matheson | NOR / Lillestrøm SK Kvinner | Oakville, ON, CAN
M- Chelsea Stewart | USA / Vanderbilt University | The Pas, MB, CAN
M- Kaylyn Kyle | CAN / Vancouver Whitecaps FC | Saskatoon, SK, CAN
M- Brooke McCalla | CAN / Master’s Futbol Academy | Pickering, ON, CAN
M- Diamond Simpson| CAN / Hamilton FC| Mississauga, ON, CAN
F- Josée Bélanger | CAN / Amiral de Québec | Coaticook, QC, CAN
F- Christina Julien | CAN / Ottawa Fury | Williamstown, ON, CAN
F- Amélia Pietrangelo | CAN / Comètes de Laval | Laval, QC, CAN
F- Marie-Laurence Ouellet | CAN / Rapides de Chaudière Ouest | Trois-Rivières, QC, CAN
F- Christine Sinclair | Unattached / sans club | Burnaby, BC, CAN
F- Melissa Tancredi | CAN / Vancouver Whitecaps FC | Ancaster, ON, CAN
Canadian Soccer Association
Leading Canada to victory and Canadians to a life-long passion for soccer
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