On her first match back from suspension, Christine Sinclair scored the winning goal to book Canada’s spot in the Cyprus Women’s Cup final. With the 2-1 win against Finland, Canada has topped Group B with six points.
Christine Sinclair 'looking forward' to return
Finland got on the board within the first 6 minutes. Lauren Sesselmann was unable to clear a cross into the box and Emmi Alanen placed the turnover to the near post past Karina LeBlanc.
Canada surged on to level the score in the 30th minute off a throw in. Sophie Schmidt megged her defender with a slight touch, moving the ball into space for Jonelle Filigno to bury in the back of the net.
Match Highlights: Canada WNT 2-1 Finland
Later, a penalty kick was awarded to Canada when Majia Saari fell over while awkwardly heading away the ball and the follow-up shot struck her arm. Sinclair finished the PK past Tinja-Rikka Korpela, giving Canada the lead in the 37th minute.
Coming on for Canada in the 71st minute, Christina Julien earned her 50th cap at the very same tournament where she made her first appearance in 2009.
The intensity turned up in the last 10 minutes of the match when Finland created a number of dangerous opportunities. Sesselmann headed a corner kick off the line before second half substitute Stephanie Labbé smothered the ensuing shot; Nora Heroum struck the post; and Sinclair, too, cleared the ball with a header.
Before facing England or New Zealand in Canada’s third consecutive Cyprus Cup final, they will close out group play against the Netherlands on Monday, March 11 (5:30pm local time, 9:30am ET/6:30am PT).
CANWNT: Canada 2-1 Finland, Reactions
Other match-ups at the Cyprus Cup resulted in:
Italy 0-2 New Zealand
Scotland 4-4 England
Switzerland 1-1 Netherlands
Republic of Ireland 1-0 South Africa
Korea Republic 3-0 Northern Ireland
Canada: Karina LeBlanc (Stephanie Labbé, 46’); Rhian Wilkinson, Kadeisha Buchanan (Emily Zurrer, 84’), Carmelina Moscato and Lauren Sesselmann (Melanie Booth, 76’); Kaylyn Kyle (Desiree Scott, 46’), Diana Matheson and Sophie Schmidt; Adriana Leon (Christina Julien, 71’), Jonelle Filigno (Brittany Timko, 61’) and Christine Sinclair
Tinja-Rikka Korpela; Majia Saari, Tujia Hyyrnyen Susanna Lehtinen, Tina Saario, Annika Kukkonen, Marianna Tolvanen, Emmi Alanen, Adelina Engman and Nora Heroum (substitutes not recorded here)
FIFA Women's World Cup Canada 2015 News
Venue General Managers overseeing venue preparations in FIFA Women’s World Cup 2015 host cities were announced. The six GMs boast plenty of international games experiences, including the Olympics, FIFA Youth World Cups, Volleyball Canada and the IIHF Ice Hockey Women's World Championships. Read more about the GMs working in Vancouver, Edmonton, Winnipeg, Ottawa, Montréal and Moncton.