Women's Team

Beckie to play in Olympic Final

Beckie to play in Olympic Final
Janine Beckie will compete for an Olympic gold medal, having reached the Final of the 2020 Games.

The City winger helped Canada to a famous 1-0 win over the United States (without Abby Dahlkemper) at the Ibaraki Kashima Stadium with Jessie Fleming netting the crucial strike from the penalty spot.

Beckie completed the full 90 minutes of the clash, as 2012 and 2016 bronze medallists Canada clinched a famous victory – their first win over the Stars and Stripes in 20 years – to guarantee they will return home with at least a silver medal.

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The first half in Kashima bore little in terms of goalmouth action and clear-cut chances – the opening 45 overshadowed with an injury to Alyssa Naeher in the USA goal.

The shot-stopper, who saved three penalties in the quarter-final triumph over the Netherlands, including two spot-kicks in the shoot-out, suffered a knee injury and was replaced by Adrianna Nichole Franch on the half-hour mark.

The second half sparked into life, as the USA – inspired by the triple introduction of former City star Carli Lloyd, Megan Rapinoe and Christen Press – laid siege to the Canada goal but could not find a way past Stephanie Labbe.

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The shot-stopper denied Julie Ertz, Lloyd, Press and Lindsey Horan, after Lynn Williams had also smashed off-target as the World Cup winners came out fighting.

As the onslaught continued, there looked to be only one winner but the decisive moment arrived on 74 minutes at the other end, as Canada won a penalty largely against the run of play.

The decision was awarded by VAR, who adjudged Tierna Davidson had upended Deanne Rose, and Fleming stepped up to convert, handing Canada a precious lead.

With time running out, the Stars and Stripes pressed for a leveller – Lloyd coming closest, heading onto the crossbar.

Former City midfielder Sam Mewis was also introduced but could not make an impact, while Beckie sought to double Canada’s lead but fired straight at Franch.

Despite six minutes of injury-time, Canada hung on for an historic victory to seal their place in the Final.

Bev Priestman's side will face Sweden (featuring former City forward Kosovare Asllani) in the Final on Friday 8 August (3am UK time), while the USA will face Australia in the third-place play-off on Thursday 7 August (9am UK time).

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