What to expect…
If there are more Brittany Timko-like strikers to come out of the current edition of the Canadian Women’s U-17 soccer squad, the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup looks very promising for Canada.
It was announced Friday that Vancouver would be one of 6 host cities for the aforementioned 2015 World Cup. This is confirmation of the growing reputation Vancouver has for being a premiere host city.
Where 26 year old Vancouver native Brittany Timko comes in is as a role model for younger players participating in the London Olympics this summer. That youth will be veteran and leader material come 2015 where we could see a changing of the guard in women’s soccer. Canada wasn’t exactly beat senseless by the USA in the recent Olympic Qualifying at BC Place so who’s to say Canada won’t take over at some point? It may not be probable but it’s also not impossible.
It’s worth mentioning the final between Canada and the USA garnered over 25,000 fans and with the Vancouver Whitecaps of MLS looking to emerge as stronger contenders, my crystal ball says Vancouver is about to become a huge soccer city.
Along with Timko is stalwart Christine Sinclair. Yes, the same Sinclair who broke her nose in the World Cup last year before coming back in the same game to score Canada’s only goal.
These are the kinds of leaders taking Canada into the upper echelon of the female soccer galaxy. Canada is currently ranked 7th in the world and with a strong showing in London this summer, who knows, they could be favourites in the biggest tournament of them all.
They’ll certainly be hoping to improve on their showing in Germany last summer where they failed to win a single game and were eliminated in the preliminary round.
Joining Vancouver as host cities are Edmonton, Winnipeg, Ottawa, Montreal and Moncton. Toronto was noticeably left out due to its hosting of the Pan-American Games. We’ll never know what would happen if Toronto was in the mix, but early on, it looks like Vancouver is the odds on favourite to host the championship match.
Vancouver obviously has BC Place as the premiere venue to host a final. Seating at BC Place is around 55,000.
Looking at the other cities such as Edmonton, you have Commonwealth Stadium, but honestly, why would FIFA and people in general want to spend their precious summer days in northern Alberta when they can be on the beach in Vancouver?
Montreal has the 20,000 seater Saputo Stadium, so that’s a no just because of capacity. There is also Olympic Stadium, home of the 1976 Summer Olympics which holds roughly 66,000 but a french speaking venue may not be ideal for such a world event where English is the most commonly spoken language. Then again, they did have the Olympics so who knows?
I’ll rule out Winnipeg and Moncton right away. Ottawa has an outside shot but I’ll repeat, Vancouver remains the odds on favourite to host the final.
Bookmark NWSB for upcoming features on BC, Washington and Oregon born players starring in the 2012 London Olympics in women’s soccer.