Jessie Fleming (left) earned a call-up to the Canada women's national team after a series of outstanding performances at the CONCACAF Women's Under-17 Championship last month. (Photo: Mexsport)
OTTAWA – Head coach John Herdman announced Thursday a 20-player roster for the Canada Women’s National Team, which will compete at the 2013 Torneio Internacional Cidade de Sao Paolo, December 11-22, in Brasilia, Brazil.
Highlighting the selection is the inclusion of 15-year-old Jessie Fleming, one of 10 finalists for the first-ever CONCACAF Women’s Player of the Year award. The midfielder won the Golden Ball as the best player at last month’s CONCACAF Women’s Under-17 Championship. She was a dominant presence throughout the tournament, scoring three goals and being the catalyst for many others, as Canada finished runner-up to Mexico.
“The mantra still is, if you’re good enough you’re old enough,” said Herdman of Fleming. “It’s for Jessie to see a new level and work with some of her heroes and give her a chance to see if she’s someone who can impact the squad.”
The trip to Brazil also marks the return of Kadeisha Buchanan, who has been recently due to commitments with West Virginia University. The 18-year-old is coming off an outstanding rookie season with the Mountaineers, where she was named the Big 12 Conference Defender and Rookie of the Year, starting all 23 matches at center back.
“This group that we’ve got gives you a picture of what you could have in 2015 in the opening round (of the FIFA Women's World Cup Canada 2015),” signaled Herdman. “So it’s a chance to rehearse certain processes and learning from the event.”
Canada, which won the competition in 2010, opens against Scotland on December 11, before facing Chile (December 15) and the host (December 18). A final classification game will take place on December 22.
(Torneio Internacional Cidade de Sao Paolo – December 11-22, 2013 in Brasilia, Brazil)
GOALKEEPERS: Stephanie Labbe (Orebro/Sweden), Karina LeBlanc (Portland Thorns/USA), Erin McLeod (Chicago Red Stars/USA)
DEFENDERS: Kadeisha Buchanan (West Virginia University/USA), Robyn Gayle (Washington Spirit/USA), Carmelina Moscato (Seattle Reign/USA), Marie-Eve Nault (Orebro/Sweden), Lauren Sesselmann (FC Kansas City/USA), Rhian Wilkinson (Boston Breakers/USA), Sura Yekka (Brams United), Emily Zurrer (Seattle Reign/USA)
MIDFIELDERS: Selenia Iacchelli (Edmonton Victoria SC), Jessie Fleming (London NorWest SC), Kaylyn Kyle (Boston Breakers/USA), Diana Matheson (Washington Spirit/USA), Sophie Schmidt (Sky Blue FC/USA), Desiree Scott (FC Kansas City/USA), Brittany Baxter Timko (no club)
FORWARDS: Adriana Leon (Chicago Red Stars/USA), Christine Sinclair (Portland Thorns/USA)