Haiti tops Canada, earns first-ever FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup berth

Haiti players (pictured) celebrate after scoring against Canada in the CONCACAF Under-20 Women’s Championship match for third place on January 28, 2018, in Couva, Trinidad & Tobago. (Photo: CA-Images)

COUVA, Trinidad & Tobago — Sherly Jeudy’s first-half goal helped lift Haiti to a 1-0 win over Canada in the 2018 CONCACAF Under-20 Women’s Championship (CU20W) match for third place, clinching the Caribbean nation’s first-ever bid to the FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup, on Sunday afternoon at Ato Boldon Stadium.

Haiti, which fell to the four-time defending champion United States on penalty kicks in the semifinals, joins the Americans and Mexico as CONCACAF’s representatives in France in August.

Canada finished the match with 10 players after substitute Jessica De Filippo was shown a straight red for a hard tackle two minutes from the end of normal time.

Jeudy struck in the 18th minute with her first goal of the tournament and the first-ever Haitian goal against Canada in CU20W play. The 19-year-old midfielder latched onto an inch-perfect through ball by Nerilia Mondesir to split a pair of defenders and fired under the crossbar with her second touch from 12-yards out.

Canada – a 4-0 winner over Haiti in a group stage match on January 22 -- had a chance to break the tense scoreless draw when a low Jordyn Riviere cross evaded Haiti goalkeeper Kerly Theus and landed at the feet of Sarah Stratigakis.  Her deflected effort, however, caromed off the crossbar and onto the top netting for a Canadian corner kick in the 11th minute.

Gabrielle Carle nearly capitalized on a defensive miscue for the Canadian equalizer in the 48th minute, but after taking a touch with her right foot, a volley with her left was denied by the outstanding Theus.