Photo via Steve Kingsman for Canada Soccer
Sinclair leads Canadian women’s soccer team to Rio for Olympic Games
Canada Soccer has announced the women’s squad that’s headed to Rio2016.
After clinching a berth back in February, the reigning Olympic bronze medal-winning team is now ready to take on the world at the Games once again.
Rio 2016 women’s national soccer team in photos:
Canadian goalkeeper Stephanie Labbe stops a shot during Pan Am Games football semifinal against Colombia on July 22, 2015.
Defender Kadeisha Buchanan led the backline for Canada on June 4, 2016 in an international friendly against Brazil in Toronto. (Thomas Skrlj/COC)
Ashley Lawrence started at midfield for Canada against Brazil on June 7, 2016 (Greg Kolz).
Canada captain Christine Sinclair played 80 minutes in a friendly against Brazil on June 7, 2016 in Ottawa (Greg Kolz).
Canada’s Melissa Tancredi, left, and England’s Claire Rafferty vie for the ball during first half FIFA Women’s World Cup quarter-final soccer action in Vancouver, B.C., on Saturday June 27, 2015. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
United States Carli Lloyd (10) challenges Canada’s Nichelle Prince (15) for the ball during the first half of the CONCACAF Olympic women’s soccer qualifying championship final Sunday, Feb. 21, 2016, in Houston. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)
Canada’s Janine Beckie (11) and Germany’s Wibke Meister (15) battle for the ball during second half action of the FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup quarter-finals in Edmonton, Alta., on Saturday August 16, 2014. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
Canada’s Desiree Scott, left, fights for the ball against Canada’s Desiree Scott during their bronze medal women’s soccer match at the 2012 London Summer Olympics, Thursday, Aug. 9, 2012 at the Ricoh Arena Stadium in Coventry, England. (AP Photo/Jon Super)
Canada’s Sophie Schmidt celebrates her goal against Germany during the second half of an international women’s soccer game in Vancouver, B.C., on Wednesday June 18, 2014. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Canada’s Deanne Rose (6) moves the ball past Brazil’s Poliana during first half international women’s friendly soccer action in Ottawa on Tuesday, June 7, 2016. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Diana Matheson of Canada celebrates her game winner against France in the bronze medal football match in Coventry at the 2012 London Olympics, Thursday, Aug. 9, 2012. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO, COC – Mike Ridewood
Canadian women’s soccer team member Jessie Fleming is seen during a training session in Vancouver, B.C. Wednesday, April 21, 2015. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Canada’s Rhian Wilkinson (7) moves the ball away from Brazil’s A. Alves during second half international women’s soccer friendly action in Ottawa on Tuesday, June 7, 2016. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Canada’s Allysha Chapman (2) fights for the ball against Brazil’s Debinha during second half international women’s soccer friendly action in Ottawa on Tuesday, June 7, 2016. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Switzerland’s Vanessa Bernauer, right, fights for control of the ball with Canada’s Josee Belanger during the second half of FIFA Women’s World Cup round of 16 soccer action in Vancouver, B.C. Sunday, June 21, 2015. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Canada’s Shelina Zadorsky (4) jumps over the leg of Trinidad & Tobago’s Khadidra Debesette (6) during the first half of a CONCACAF Olympic qualifying tournament soccer match Sunday, Feb. 14, 2016, in Houston. Canada won 6-0. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)
Canada’s Rebecca Quinn (6) and Mexico’s Monica Ocampo (11) fight for ball posession during the first half of the 2015 Pan Am Games women’s bronze medal soccer match in Hamilton, Ontario on Friday, July 24, 2015. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Peter Power
Sabrina D’Angelo (left) holding the Algarve Cup with Zadorsky (right), March 9th 2016.
The roster is complete with 18 players from across the country – a mix of fresh faces and long time members. The team will once again be led by Christine Sinclair who will be headed to her third Olympic Games after scoring six goals in the London 2012 tournament and being named closing flag bearer for Canada. Sinclair will be joined by long time teammates Melissa Tancredi, Rhian Wilkinson, Diana Matheson and Sophie Schmidt.
RELATED: All athletes nominated to date
The team is also joined by some newer faces such as Shelina Zadorsky, Kadeisha Buchanan, Nichelle Prince and Janine Beckie – all of whom were elevated to the senior squad in the last four years since Canada competed in London.
Janine Beckie (right) celebrates her late goal against Brazil to seal a 1-0 win in an international friendly on June 7, 2016 in Ottawa (Greg Kolz).
The team will be bringing along two goalkeepers: Stephanie Labbe and Sabrina D’Angelo. Labbe was the main keeper during TO2015 Pan Am Games for the team and has become the regular starter.
RELATED: Canada 0-2 Brazil
RELATED: Canada 1-0 Brazil
Canada recently played two friendlies against Brazil at home. After a loss in the first match in Toronto, the team went on to Ottawa where Beckie scored a goal during stoppage time leading Canada to victory.
Canada challenging Brazil on a set-piece, though the visitors held the clean sheet for a 2-0 win in Toronto on June 4, 2016.
The team took Olympic bronze four years ago in London after Matheson scored the lone goal against France in the bronze medal match. They now look ahead to Rio for a chance to win gold.
More nominations: Modern pentathlon | Diving | Fencing | Table tennis | Shooting | Synchro | Taekwondo | Swimming
Canada’s path to the podium will not be easy as they have landed in a group with world number two Germany, Australia (no. 5) and Zimbabwe (no. 95th). Canada is ranked no. 10 in the FIFA women’s world football rankings and will open on August 3, 2016 in Sao Paulo at 2:00 p.m. ET against Australia.
Canada’s women’s football team receive their bronze medals at Wembly Stadium at the 2012 London Olympics, Thursday, Aug. 9, 2012. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO, COC – Mike Ridewood
Here is the complete roster: