Chilliwack’s Jordyn Huitema days away from World Cup debut

The 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup is in France and Huitema is on the Canadian national women’s roster.

Not that there was much doubt, but Chilliwack’s Jordyn Huitema has been confirmed as a participant in the 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup in France.

Canada Soccer announced the 23 person roster for the international tournament that runs June 7 to July 7.

Huitema, a Chilliwack FC alum, is one of three 18 year olds on the roster along with midfielder Julia Grosso and fullback fullback Jayde Riviere.

Huitema is one of four forwards on the roster along with 36 year old Canadian soccer legend Christine Sinclair, 26 year old Adriana Leon and 24 year old Janine Beckie.

Huitema is one of five B.C. natives on the roster along with Grosso (Vancouver), Sinclair (Burnaby), Sophie Schmidt (Abbotsford) and Shannon Woeller (Vancouver).

While Huitema appears in her first FIFA Women’s World Cup, it’s the fifth time for Sinclair and fourth time for Schmidt.

The two veterans helped Canada advance to the quarter-finals of the 2015 tournament which was held in Canada.

Counting this year, Canada will have appeared in seven straight editions of the tournament since 1995.

Canada’s best finish was a fourth place showing 2003, which head coach Kenneth Heiner-Møller would love to eclipse this year.

“We are going there to win it, but we have been very good at taking things one step at a time,” he said. “We didn’t look beyond the Algarve Cup and we didn’t look beyond matches against England or Spain; we only looked at what was right in front of us. Right now, there are three group matches in front of us and we are focused very clearly on Cameroon, New Zealand and Netherlands.”

Huitema’s crew opens June 10 against Cameroon at Montpellier. Then it’s a June 15 date with New Zealand at Grenoble followed by a June 20 match against the Netherlands at Reims.

Two, or possibly three, teams from Canada’s group will advance to the Round of 16 (June 23-25). The quarter-final round is June 27-19 followed by semi-finals July 2-3 and the championship game July 7.

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