Cana­dian coach re­calls favourite mo­ments of Women’s World Cup

Cape Breton Post - - SPORTS - BY NEIL DAVID­SON

As the Women's World Cup wound down, Cana­dian coach John Herdman pointed to his team's very first game when asked about his favourite mem­o­ries from the tour­na­ment.

“I do have some big mo­ments,” he said in an in­ter­view.

The big­gest is Herdman's joy­ful em­brace with Chris­tine Sin­clair af­ter the Cana­dian cap­tain scored on a stop­page-time penalty for a 1-0 win over China in the tour­na­ment opener June 6.

“The mem­ory that I've worked hard for and I'll carry for­ever now is the cel­e­bra­tion with Sin­clair the open­ing game,” he said. “I mean the pres­sure on us in that game and for her to do what she did. And then she called my name and ran to­wards us.

“She's one of the great­est women I've ever met. And to have some­one in that mo­ment want to share that with you and then the play­ers was just price­less. Price­less.”

Af­ter scor­ing, Sin­clair turned and raced to­wards the Cana­dian bench at Ed­mon­ton's Com­mon­wealth Sta­dium. She pointed at a ju­bi­lant Herdman and the two em­braced on the side­lines, only to be swal­lowed up by a mob of team­mates. It was Sin­clair's 154th in­ter­na­tional goal.

Herdman also pointed to the 1-1 tie against the Nether­lands two games later when 20-yearold midfielder Ash­ley Lawrence scored in the 10th minute. It was her first goal at the se­nior level.

“We showed (the team) some stuff on Eng­land (at the) 1990 (World Cup) and how they were get­ting crit­i­cized for their open­ing games be­ing bland and drab. And we talked about a young Paul Gas­coigne step­ping up ... and be­ing a top player,” Herdman said.

“Young Ash­ley Lawrence re­sponded and she came to the bench and she did the Eng­land cel­e­bra­tion, the 1990 World Cup cel­e­bra­tion. It was bloody bril­liant.”

Eighth-ranked Canada even­tu­ally ex­ited the tour­na­ment in a 2-1 quar­ter-fi­nal loss to No. 6 Eng­land. The sec­ond-ranked United States meets No. 4 Ja­pan, the de­fend­ing World Cup cham­pion, in Sun­day's fi­nal at B.C. Place Sta­dium.

CP PHOTO

Canada coach John Herdman, right, cel­e­brates as Josee Belanger, back, is mobbed by her team­mates af­ter scor­ing against Switzer­land dur­ing the sec­ond half of the FIFA Women's World Cup round of 16 soc­cer ac­tion in Van­cou­ver, B.C., on Sun­day, June 21.

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