The Arnold Clark Cup tournament in February allowed the Canadian women’s team to test itself against three of the top nations in the world.
Canada, ranked No. 6 in the FIFA world rankings at the time, drew hosts England (No. 8) in its opening match, before earning a rare win over No. 3 Germany, and losing to ninth-ranked Spain.
But this month, rather than face more top-tier teams, the Canadians have opted to play a different kind of opponent in Nigeria, who at No. 39 is thirty-three spots below the Reds in the current FIFA rankings. The two sides will square off in a pair of international friendlies on April 8 in Vancouver and April 11 in Victoria as part of the second leg of Canada’s Celebration Tour in recognition of its gold medal victory at last summer’s Tokyo Olympics.
Lining up a pair of matches against Nigeria for this international window was the best Canada could manage due to a host of reasons, coach Bev Priestman revealed in a one-on-one interview with TFC Republic.