Canada v Republic of Ireland: Women’s World Cup 2023 – live | Women’s World Cup 2023

Key events

Not long now: Led by Argentinian referee Laura Fortunato, both sets of players march up the steps from the bowels of the stadium and line up for the national anthems. It’s a wet night in Perth and there appears to be a huge Irish contingent in the sold out 20,500-capacity stadium.

Heather Payne is out for Ireland …

Ireland’s right wing-back Heather Payne was an injury doubt before the game and is currently standing by the dug-out dabbing her eyes with a hankerchief after being forced to pull out during the warm-up. SHe’ll be replaced by Aine O’Gorman.

Aine O'Gorman has received a late call-up to the Irish starting XI after Heather Payne pulled out during the warm-up with a tight hamstring.
Aine O’Gorman has received a late call-up to the Irish starting XI after Heather Payne pulled out during the warm-up with a tight hamstring. Photograph: Luisa González/Reuters

What’s in store? Cards on the table – as an Irishman I make no bones about the fact I want the Girls in Green to win this game, but as somebody with Canadian out-laws (who are hockey mad and have zero interest in football even if my nephew did send me a Halifax Wanderers hoodie earlier this year) … well, I still want Ireland to batter the Canadians.

Ideally, we’ll get a cracking game of football today but the omens look bleak. Both managers are notoriously risk averse and tend to send out well-organised, defensively obdurate sides who are curtrently struggling to score goals. A feast of free-flowing, attacking football seems unlikely.

Given the huge number of Irish people who live and work in Perth, tonight’s match could be like a home game for the Republic of Ireland.
Given the huge number of Irish people who live and work in Perth, tonight’s match could be like a home game for the Republic of Ireland. Photograph: Luisa González/Reuters
Some Canada fans are pictured at the Rectangular Stadium in Perth/Boorloo.
Some Canada fans are pictured at the Rectangular Stadium in Perth/Boorloo. Photograph: Will Russell/FIFA/Getty Images

Those teams: Canada’s skipper Christine Sinclair is omitted from the starting line-up, the 40-year-old striker dropping to the bench at her sixth World Cup. Chelsea’s Jessie Fleming returns to the side after recovering from injury.

With Heather Payne and Louise both passed fit to play, Vera Pauw makes just one change to the Ireland side that lost against Australia. Lucy Quinn comes into the front three in place of Marissa Sheva.

Vera Pauw on Canada: “Canada is a different team than Australia,” said the Irish manager. They have more flexibility and creativity in their team. Their biggest threat is their experience. They know how to win games and finals. Against Nigeria, Christy Sinclair missed a penalty. If the penalty went in, they would have won and it would be a completely different situation for both of us.

“Jessie Fleming is a huge player for them. Their playing style hasn’t changed and their dangers remain the same. Sinclair is a player who you won’t see for a while and suddenly, then she scores. We need to find a way to get to their goal.”

Ireland manager Vera Pauw oversees training in Perth.
Ireland manager Vera Pauw (centre) oversees training in Perth. Photograph: Luisa González/Reuters

Bev Priestman on the Rep of Ireland: “If I was her [Pauw], I’m not sure whether I’d change a thing,” said the Canadian manager. “Against Ireland, it’s about moving the ball to break down that solid block. It’s trying to keep the tempo of the game, rather than be lured into that slow rhythm. That can happen when you’re in possession, then waiting for someone to give it back. Ball speed will be a critical component of breaking them down.”

Canada head coach Bev Priestman addresses the ladies and gentlemen of the press.
Canada head coach Bev Priestman addresses the ladies and gentlemen of the press. Photograph: Aitor Alcalde/FIFA/Getty Images

Canada v Republic of Ireland line-ups

Canada: Sheridan, Riviere, Buchanan, Gilles, Lawrence, Quinn, Fleming, Grosso, Huitema, Viens, Leon.

Subs: D’Angelo, Chapman, Zadorsky, Rose, Sinclair, Schmidt, Prince, Carle, Lacasse, Awujo, Smith, Proulx.

Rep of Ireland: Brosnan, Connolly, Louise Quinn, Fahey, McCabe, Littlejohn, O’Sullivan, Payne, Farrelly, Carusa, Lucy Quinn.

Subs: Moloney, O’Riordan, Mustaki, Caldwell, Barrett, Agg, O’Gorman, Larkin, Sheva, Grant, Atkinson, Walsh.

Referee: Laura Fortunato (Argentina)

Early team news

Louise Quinn looks set to start for the Republic of Ireland, despite concerns over a foot injury she picked up in their opener against the Republic of Ireland that left her hobbling around in a protective plastic boot. The Birmingham City centre-back has 106 caps for her country and came through training unscathed yesterday.

Quinn was Ireland manager Vera Pauw’s only major injury concern, although wing-back Heather Payne trained with strapping on her thigh yesterday after feeling tightness in her hamstring.

Canada midfielder Jessie Fleming was forced to sit out her team’s scoreless draw with Nigeria but is available for selection in Perth today.

Louis Quinn has recovered from a foot injury and is available to take her place in the heart of Ireland’s defence today.
Louis Quinn has recovered from a foot injury and is available to take her place in the heart of Ireland’s defence today. Photograph: Ryan Byrne/INPHO/Shutterstock

Group B: Canada v Rep of Ireland

Usually the home of Perth Glory and Western Force, the Perth Rectangular Stadium is the venue for today’s match between Canada and Ireland. While it’s not must-win for the Irish following their defeat at the hands of Australia, it’s certainly must-not-lose and anything less than a draw will ruin any chance Vera Pauw’s side have of advancing to the knockout stages.

Olympic champions Canada could only draw their opening game against a Nigeria team ranked 40th in the world but know a win here will leave them set fair to make it through to the last 16. Kick-off on the west coast is at 1pm (BST) but stay tuned in the meantime for team news and build-up.

Ireland’s Megan Connolly makes her way out on to the pitch ahead of training yesterday.
Ireland’s Megan Connolly makes her way out on to the pitch ahead of training yesterday. Photograph: Aitor Alcalde/FIFA/Getty Images