Canada draw France, Nigeria, South Korea at 2022 U-20 Women's World Cup
TORONTO – The path has been laid out.
With qualifiers now completed around the globe, the draw for the 2022 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup was held on Wednesday in Costa Rica, with the 16 participating nations now knowing their fate for the tournament being held later this year down in Central America.
For Canada's U-20 Women's National Team, it was a big event, as they get back into the swing of this tournament for the first time since 2016. Having snapped a two-tournament drought to make it to this tournament, qualifying after finishing third at this year’s CONCACAF U20 W Championships, they’re eager to now build off of what they showed in that competition in the big dance now.
And now, after the draw on Wednesday, they now know who they’ll face at that big dance down in Costa Rica, as the draw saw them get placed into Group C with France, Nigeria and South Korea, in what is expected to be a very solid and balanced group.
First, there’s France, who are getting set for their eighth participation at the U20 World Cup, having missed out on just two of the 10 editions of this tournament that have been held. Despite that, however, they are yet to win it all, having made it to the top four on four separate occasions, but making it to the final in just one of those four editions, which was when they lost to North Korea in 2016.
Secondly, there’s Nigeria, who have actually never missed a U20 World Cup, having qualified for every tournament since its inception in 2002. Much like France, however, winning it all has eluded them despite that success at just getting their foot in the door - they have made the top four just three times in 10 participations, doing so three tournaments in a row between 2010 and 2014, finishing runners-up in the 2010 and 2014 editions, specifically.
Then lastly, there’s South Korea, who are gearing up for their sixth participation at this tournament. There, they’re looking to get to the final for the first time ever, with their best finish being a third-place triumph in 2010, having otherwise faltered at the quarter-final stage twice.
The draw is complete for the #CanW20 at the 2022 U20 World Cup, held later this year in Costa Rica. There, Canada will be in Group C. Their group is as follows:— Alexandre Gangué-Ruzic (@AlexGangueRuzic) May 5, 2022
This is Canada's 1st participation at the U20WC since 2016#CanXNT/#CanWNT
So for Canada, who themselves are preparing for their eighth participation at this tournament, there’s no doubt that they’ll have some stiff tests down in Central America. Having made the quarter-finals just once since 2006 (they finished 2nd at the first tournament in 2002, before bowing out in the quarter-finals in 2004), they have historically struggled in this competition, and will want to change that.
Especially given the recent success of Canada’s senior team, of which many of these players are looking to push into, this will be a great chance for them to prove that they're ready for the big time, allowing them to join the defending Olympic gold medallists, who are looking to add a World Cup to their trophy cabinet next year.
The U20 World Cup will be held in Costa Rica from the 10th to the 28th of August, 2022. The participating 16 teams have been split into four groups of four, with the top two in each group advancing to the quarter-finals. From there, it’ll be a straight knockout to determine the winner of the tournament.