Saturday , October 23 2021

Huitema, Canada made the semifinals at the U17 Women's World Cup for the first time


MONTEVIDEO, Uruguay – 83rd minute captain Jordyn Huitema lifted Canada to a 1-0 win over Germany on Sunday, moving Canadian women to the FIFA U-17 Women's World Cup semifinals for the first time.

The 17-year-old player from Chilliwack, B.C., defeated two defenders to beat the winner.

Canada has never reached the final of the four Under-17 tournaments, lost in the quarterfinals in 2014, 2012 and 2008 (when defeated 3-1 by Germany). Canada tied Germany 1-1 and 2-2 when they met in the pool in the 2016 and 2014 tournaments.

Young Canada will play Mexico, which rallied to beat Ghana on Sunday's penalty shootout, on Wednesday's semi-final. Canada lost 2-1 to Mexico in the CONCACAF Championship semifinals in June.

New Zealand face Spain on the other semifinal Wednesday. Like Mexico, both teams need penalties to reach the top four.

The only Canadian team, male or female, to get better at the FIFA world championship was in 2002 when Canada lost 1-0 after extra time to the US at the FIFA U-19 Championship (now the FIFA U-20 Championship).

Canada has 58 percent ownership in the first tight half-week which only saw half the chances at the Estadio Charrua. No team has carried out many attacks.

Huitema had a rare opportunity in the 71st minute, entered behind his marker but his shot was stopped.

Coach Rhian Wilkinson, who returned to his first string list, made eight changes from the team that lost 5-0 to Spain in the round-robin final. Canada entered the match knowing it had qualified for the quarterfinals.

Only Kaila Novak, Lara Kazandjian and Jade Rose stayed at the beginning 11.

Canada was driven by the return of Huitema from a one-match suspension. Huitema was sent off when a 2-0 win over South Korea for his elbow in an air challenge.

Kazandjian had the first chance in Canada, in the 33rd minute, from Huitema's pass, but the shot was easy to handle. Andersen Williams shot high in the 35th minute.

Canada pulled Germany in the quarter-finals after losing to Spain on Wednesday. That dropped him to second place in Group D. Germany then blanked 4-0 to finish in Group C, preparing for the last eight meetings with Canada.

Canada blanked Colombia 3-0 and South Korea 2-0 in their first two matches in the tournament. Germany beat North Korea 4-1 and lost 1-0 to Cameroon.

Twenty players on the list of 21 Canadian women saw the action in the group phase, with only goalkeeper Sophie Guilmette not yet on the pitch.

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