History making Matildas team selected for Paris Olympics

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The 18-strong Matildas team to compete at Paris 2024 has been announced today by the Australian Olympic Committee at Sydney Olympic Park.

Captained by Steph Catley, the team features eight athletes who will become the first Australian footballers to compete at three Olympic Games.

Catley, vice-captains Emily Van Egmond and Ellie Carpenter, Mackenzie Arnold, Caitlin Foord, Alanna Kennedy, Clare Polkinghorne and Tameka Yallop will all become three-time Olympians in Paris.

Kyra Cooney-Cross, Mary Fowler, Katrina Gorry, Michelle Heyman, Teagan Micah, Hayley Raso all return for their second Games, while Clare Hunt, Kaitlyn Torpey, Cortnee Vine and Clare Wheeler have been selected to make their Olympic debut.

The Matildas enter Paris off the back of Australia’s best ever finish in Olympic football with fourth in Tokyo.

Drawn in a pool with former gold medallists USA and Germany along with Zambia, the team will open their campaign the day before the Opening ceremony, 25 July, against Germany in Marseille.

The 18 athletes selected today is the largest selection announcement so far for the Australian Olympic Team for Paris, with the team now numbering 134 of an expected 460 team size.

Australian Olympic Team Chef de Mission Anna Meares said, “I am thrilled to announce the Matildas team for Paris 2024.”

“This team is already full of trailblazers and record breakers, with eight players set to become the first three-time football Olympians for Australia,” Ms Meares said.

“Thank you to the team at Football Australia, and everyone who has helped these 18 players grow from their first time having a go at football to becoming Paris Olympians.

“Congratulations to each of the players selected today, as well as to your families, friends, coaches and supporters who are all celebrating your Olympic achievement.”

The Matildas Head Coach Tony Gustavsson welcomed today’s announcement.

“This has been an incredibly challenging squad to select with so many quality players competing fiercely for limited spots,” Mr Gustavsson said. 

“It has been a methodical process over the past couple of years to reach to this point, and each of the players selected bring unique and beneficial qualities to our team that will be vital for our Paris 2024 campaign.

“I would like to congratulate all the players selected and the teammates, coaches, family and friends that have brought them to this moment. I know that this team will give everything for the coat of arms and will represent Australia to the best of their ability in the true Aussie way.”

Sharn Freier, Charlotte Grant, Courtney Nevin and Lydia Williams have been named as the travelling reserves (known as Ap athletes under Games accreditation). The travelling reserves can be selected as a replacement athlete onto the Australian Olympic Team in case of injury or other withdrawal of one of the selected 18 athletes.

The women’s football competition will be held in seven cities, however with the draw complete, Australia can only play in four cities – Paris, Nantes, Lyon or Marseille. The women’s tournament starts before the opening ceremony on July 25 and concludes on 10 August 2024.

Australia have been drawn in Group B against USA, Germany and Zambia. Their pool games are: 25 July against Germany (Marseille), 28 July against Zambia (Nice), and 31 July against USA (Marseille).

Matildas squad: Mackenzie Arnold (GK), Ellie Carpenter (VC), Steph Catley (C), Kyra Cooney-Cross, Caitlin Foord, Mary Fowler, Katrina Gorry, Michelle Heyman, Clare Hunt, Alanna Kennedy, Teagan Micah (GK), Clare Polkinghorne, Hayley Raso, Kaitlyn Torpey, Emily van Egmond (VC), Cortnee Vine, Clare Wheeler, Tameka Yallop

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