CANBERRA, March 25 (Xinhua) — Australia’s women’s football team will face defending champions Germany next month as part of their preparation for the Tokyo Olympic Games.
According to Football Australia’s statement on Thursday, the warm-up match will be held at Brita-Arena Wiesbaden on April 11, marking the first time the Matildas will be in action since qualifying for Tokyo.
The clash will also give their fans a first look at new head coach Tony Gustavsson, who officially started his role in January.
“It is important for our development as a team that we take on quality opponents often to measure our progress and build strong foundations for the next three years,” said Gustavsson, who worked as an assistant coach in two World Cup-winning tenures with the American women’s national team in 2015 and 2019.
“Consistent matches against highly ranked teams are key to our ability to reach our full potential, and I am looking forward to this first challenge.”
The clash against Germany, who currently ranked number two in the world, will be the first time the two teams have met since a 2-2 draw at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games.
The Matildas, who qualified for Tokyo after securing a last-gasp 1-1 draw with China and then winning a playoff last year, are ranked seventh in the world and lead the AFC (Asian Football Confederation) teams in the rankings.
China and South Korea will play their delayed two-legged playoff in April to determine which side secures a berth at the Tokyo Olympics. Enditem