Christine Sinclair will miss the SheBelieves Cup with an injury. (Photo courtesy of Canada Soccer)
Canada will limp into its first match against the United States when it kicks off the SheBelieves Cup in Orlando, Fla. Thursday night.
The Maple Leafs are missing seven players, including captain Christine Sinclair, the all-time international goal-scorer, who is injured.
Midfielder Diana Matheson and Sinclair did not travel to Orlando due to injury while goalkeeper Erin McLeod and defender Bianca St-Georges returned to their clubs after picking up injuries at camp, Canada Soccer said in a news release.
The organization added that “despite a concerted effort” defender Kadeisha Buchanan of Olympique Lyonnais and forward Jordyn Huitema and fullback Ashley Lawrence, both of Paris Saint-Germain FC, were denied release by their French clubs.
“Given the new roster realities, what a great opportunity for players to rise up and show that they can compete at this Olympic level,” Canada head coach Bev Priestman said in a news release. “The tournament will be used to assess the player pool and players’ readiness to achieve our goals at the Olympic Games.”
The Canadians and Americans have qualified for the Tokyo Summer Games.