Canada to face England at Women's World Cup
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VANCOUVER - Canada's road to the Women's World Cup semifinals goes through England.
The sixth-ranked Lionesses defeated No. 11 Norway 2-1 in Ottawa on Monday to set up a quarter-final showdown with No. 8 Canada in Vancouver on Saturday.
Canada's all-time record against England is 5-6 although John Herdman's team also holds a 2-0 win over Great Britain in the quarter-finals of the London Olympics.
The Canadians edged England 1-0 in Hamilton on a highlight-reel goal from Sophie Schmidt in the final warmup for both teams prior to the World Cup. The English, however, were still getting acclimatized after landing in North American and did not field their top lineup.
The Hamilton win ended a four-match losing streak against England.
The two teams have some links.
Herdman is a native of Newcastle and was linked to the England job after Hope Powell was fired in September 2013. A month later, he signed a contract extension with Canada that takes him through the 2020 Olympics.
Mark Sampson, 32, took over the Lionesses.
Midfielder Desiree Scott is the lone Canadian playing in the English league. The Winnipeg native will face Notts Counties Ladies FC teammates Alex Greenwood, Laura Bassett, Ellen White and Carly Telford on the England squad.
England made it to the knockout stages by virtue of finishing second in Group F. Sampson's team bounced back from an opening-day 1-0 loss to France to beat Mexico and Colombia by 2-1 margins.
The English are taking part in their fourth World Cup, with Monday's win over Norway their first in the knockout round. In each of their previous three tournaments, they survived the group stage but were beaten in the quarter-finals — by France in a penalty shootout in 2011, the U.S. in 2007 and Germany in 1995.
In 2011 in Germany, England was the only team to beat eventual world champion Japan, with a 2-0 decision in the group round.
In qualifying for the Canadian tournament, England won all 10 of its matches and conceded just one goal.
Canada's 1-0 win over Switzerland on Sunday in the round of 16 was its first ever victory over a European side at the World Cup. Canada's tournament record against Europe going into the game was 0-9-1.
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