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Australia to commence Paris Olympic qualifiers in FIFA World Cup host city

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Canberra: Australia’s national women’s football team will start their qualification campaign for the Paris 2024 Olympic Games in a FIFA World Cup host city in October.

Football Australia (FA) on Thursday announced that the Matildas will play three games in Perth against Chinese Taipei, the Philippines and Iran in round two of the Asian qualifiers for Paris 2024 from October 26 to November 1.

Perth will host five group stage matches during the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup in Australia and New Zealand, which will be held from July 20 to August 20, but missed out on Matildas or knockout fixtures.

It means the qualifiers later this year will be a good chance for local audiences to watch hometown hero Sam Kerr in action.

“Everyone knows how proud I am to be from Perth and WA (Western Australia) so to be able to come home again with my teammates will be a really special moment,” Kerr, the Matildas’ captain and all-time leading scorer, said in a statement.

“West Aussies are big sports lovers and some of the best fans in the world, they bring amazing support for the teams that they love, and I know they will give us that same energy as we start our Olympic qualification.”

The Matildas finished fourth at the 2020 Olympics and will be aiming to replicate that success at both the home World Cup and in Paris.

Prior to the World Cup, the Matildas will play France on July 14 before playing Ireland six days later in their opening game of the tournament.

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