New Matildas Head Coach Ante Milicic today announced the twenty-three players that have been selected to represent Australia at the inaugural Cup of Nations to be held in Sydney, Brisbane, and Melbourne.
Milicic, with the input of the Matildas’ coaching staff, has selected a squad flush with players that lit up this season’s W-League, as well as two players that are currently based in Spain – midfielders Alex Chidiac and Aivi Luik.
Milicic, who named the squad in Brisbane where the team will convene for their pre-Cup of Nations training camp on Saturday, said that he’s excited to start working with the group this weekend.
“I am looking forward to all the players and staff arriving in camp and getting to work,” Milicic said. “We will have four great days of training in Brisbane before traveling to Sydney to play New Zealand in the first match of the tournament.”
“It is important that we make the most of the next two weeks that we have together both on and off the pitch. With matches and travel in quick succession throughout the Cup of Nations, this tournament will replicate some of the demands that we will experience at the 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup in France, which will be a good test for everyone involved.”
While injury has ruled some Matildas out of Milicic’s first squad, the new Australian women’s national team boss has provided opportunities to some players that have been out of the national team set up recently.
Melbourne Victory defender Teigen Allen has been rewarded for her strong form in the W-League this season having last appeared for Australia three years ago, while Sydney FC’s Grand Final winning captain Teresa Polias could make her first appearance for the national team since 2015 throughout the Cup of Nations. Hayley Raso will also make her return to the squad after making a remarkable comeback from a broken back sustained while playing in the United States for Portland Thorns last year.
The six-match 2019 Cup of Nations will kick-off at Netstrata Jubilee Stadium in Kogarah on Thursday, 28 February with Argentina playing Korea Republic followed by the Matildas against New Zealand.
Three days later the Cup of Nations will shift to Brisbane as Argentina and New Zealand go head to head at Suncorp Stadium, before the Matildas take on Korea Republic in their second match of the tournament. This will mark the first fixture played by the Matildas in Brisbane since 2014.
Melbourne’s AAMI Park will play host to the third and final match day of the Cup of Nations on Wednesday, 6 March where Korea Republic will take on New Zealand, and Australia will meet Argentina in the last game of the competition.
Additionally, Brisbane City Council Lord Mayor Graham Quirk said Brisbane City Council was proud to support the inaugural Cup of Nations tournament at Suncorp Stadium.
“We love our sport here in Brisbane, and it’s great to see the inclusion of familiar faces from the Brisbane Roar in Ante’s first Matildas squad,” Cr Quirk said.
“The Matildas will arrive in Brisbane for their pre-Cup of Nations training camp this weekend, and we’re sure they will enjoy their stay here as they utilise some of our city’s top facilities.”
Westfield Matildas 23-Player Squad | 2019 Cup of Nations
|Name||Club, Country||A-International Caps (Goals)|
|Teigen ALLEN||Melbourne Victory FC, Australia||39 (0)|
|Laura ALLEWAY||Melbourne Victory FC, Australia||57 (2)|
|Mackenzie ARNOLD (Gk)||Brisbane Roar FC, Australia||22 (0)|
|Tameka BUTT||Melbourne City FC, Australia||74 (10)|
|Eliza CAMPBELL (Gk)||Perth Glory FC, Australia||2 (0)|
|Ellie CARPENTER||Canberra United, Australia||28 (1)|
|Steph CATLEY||Melbourne City FC, Australia||69 (2)|
|Alex CHIDIAC||Atletico Madrid, Spain||14 (1)|
|Lisa DE VANNA||Sydney FC, Australia||143 (45)|
|Caitlin FOORD||Sydney FC, Australia||67 (14)|
|Emily GIELNIK||Melbourne Victory FC, Australia||24 (5)|
|Princess IBINI||Sydney FC, Australia||5 (0)|
|Elise KELLOND-KNIGHT||Melbourne City FC, Australia||102 (1)|
|Alanna KENNEDY||Sydney FC, Australia||74 (6)|
|Samantha KERR||Perth Glory FC, Australia||72 (27)|
|Chloe LOGARZO||Sydney FC, Australia||37 (6)|
|Aivi LUIK||Levante UD, Spain||19 (0)|
|Teresa POLIAS||Sydney FC, Australia||10 (0)|
|Clare POLKINGHORNE||Brisbane Roar FC, Australia||112 (9)|
|Hayley RASO||Brisbane Roar FC, Australia||30 (2)|
|Gema SIMON||Newcastle Jets FC, Australia||8 (0)|
|Emily VAN EGMOND||Newcastle Jets FC, Australia||82 (18)|
|Lydia WILLIAMS (Gk)||Melbourne City FC, Australia||74 (0)|
Note: Brisbane Roar FC attacker Allira Toby will train with the squad while the team is in Brisbane ahead of the 2019 Cup of Nations.