Aussie Focus

Blayney names Young Matildas squad for U-20 Women's World Cup

Leah Blayney has today announced the Young Matildas squad set to compete in the FIFA Under-20 Women's World Cup in Costa Rica later this month.

The Young Matildas huddle before a match

The Young Matildas huddle before a match

WATCH the Young Matildas' FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup campaign LIVE, FREE and EXCLUSIVE on SBS and SBS On Demand - with our coverage to include all of Australia’s matches, as well as the semi-finals and the final.

Blayney named 21 players following the conclusion of her side’s training camp in Mexico City, with 17 coming off match minutes in the A-League Women last season.

In a nod to the development of Australian football, all six member federations are represented in the squad – one that features some familiar faces from recent internationals against New Zealand, as well as the AFF Women’s Championship in the Philippines.
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Australia have been drawn against Costa Rica, Brazil, and Spain in their World Cup group; however, Blayney believes her side’s mix of talent, technical ability, and heart will help see them through for the first time since 2004.

"As we anticipated when we named the extended squad, selecting the final 21 players has been made extremely difficult due to the quality of play and application displayed by the playing group," Blayney said.
"While it is a young final squad that we have selected, it is a talented squad with a mix of high technical ability, ever increasing tactical maturity, and the heart and desire that are indicative of Australian teams.

"This is a squad that has the opportunity to demonstrate their quality on the global stage.

"Over the course of our preparations we have called in over 85 players and every player called in has assisted us in getting to this moment and made my task challenging.
"I want to thank each player that has represented the U-20s since 2020 as they have played a vital part in our road to Costa Rica.

"Having been on this journey together since March, this is a unified squad of players and staff who are committed and enthusiastic about representing our nation to the best of their ability.

"There is a togetherness that will be invaluable for us in this tournament against some world class nations in our group."

Australia last qualified for the U-20 Women’s World Cup in 2006 in what was the first of its current 16-team format, where the top two teams from each group advance to the knockout stages.
The Young Matildas will attempt to make up for lost time with a win against hosts Costa Rica on August 12, and they’ll have captain Sheridan Gallagher leading the way.

"Sheridan is one of our most hardworking players," Blayney said of the Western Sydney Wanderers forward.

"In terms of how she conducts herself around the group, she is extremely supportive of all the players and the girls know that. That is who you want in your corner when things are difficult.

"The other part of Sheridan Gallagher is that she never takes a backward step and that is the epitome of us as a team."

SBS will broadcast all the Young Matildas' matches from the U-20 Women’s World Cup, as well as the semi-finals and the final.

Young Matildas squad for U-20 Women’s World Cup - LIVE on SBS

Young Matildas squad for World Cup

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3 min read
Published 1 August 2022 at 8:35am
By SBS Sport
Source: SBS