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Wednesday, September 27, 2023

AUS announce 23-player squad for home Women’s World Cup


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Canberra: Co-hosts Australia have announced their final 23-player squad for the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup.

Matildas coach Tony Gustavsson on Monday revealed the list of players he will take to the historic World Cup after cutting six from a provisional squad announced in June.

Veteran forward Kyah Simon was among the surprise inclusions, making the final 23 despite tearing her anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) in October.

The 32-year-old, who missed the 2019 World Cup, has not played a competitive game since the injury.

Gustavsson selected 15 players who were part of the 2019 campaign, with seven more in line to make their World Cup debuts.

“Selecting this World Cup squad has been the toughest challenge so far, but the whole coaching and support staff are all completely overjoyed for the 23 players who will represent the nation during this tournament,” Gustavsson said.

“This is a special group of players who, when you see the anticipation around the tournament and level of interest for women’s football, have already sparked a transformation. We can’t wait to get the tournament underway in front of a record crowd of support.”

Australia will be led at the tournament by superstar striker and captain Sam Kerr, who has scored a national record 63 goals for the national team.

Clare Polkinghorne is the most experienced player in the squad with 156 caps, and is one of two players selected for their fifth World Cup.

Australia will play France in a send-off warm-up game in Melbourne on July 14 before opening their World Cup campaign against the Republic of Ireland on July 20.

The Matildas kept in good form in recent games, with victories against top 10-ranked opponents England, Spain and Sweden.

The 2023 World Cup will be held in Australia and New Zealand between July 20-August 20.

Only the top two teams from eight groups will enter the round of 16, as this is the first time that women’s football’s biggest tournament will expand to a 32-team format.

China, having clinched the Asian Cup last year, are placed in Group D with England, Denmark and Haiti.


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