Alina Litvinenko continued her excellent run of form on the European stage, netting an 85th-minute penalty to confirm Kazakhstan champions BIIK-Kazygurt’s advance to the Round of 16 with a 3-1 aggregate win over Belgium’s Anderlecht.
Kuala Lumpur: Australia remain Asia’s top-ranked women’s national team at eighth in the latest FIFA Women’s Rankings.
The Matildas, who did not play any matches since the previous update in July, are one place above DPR Korea while Japan climbed by one position to return to the top 10.
China PR and Korea Republic retained their positions - at 16th and 20th respectively - to round out Asia’s top five, while Vietnam climbed one place to 34th after winning the AFF Women’s Championship in August.
Bridgeview: Australian striker Sam Kerr made her latest entry to the record books, breaking her own record to set a new individual season scoring mark in the US-based National Women’s Soccer League on Saturday.
The Matildas goal machine and 2017 AFC Women’s Player of the Year found the back of the net twice in Chicago Red Stars’ 3-1 win over Washington Spirit, taking her season tally to 18; one more than the previous record she set in 2017.
Kerr’s 18 goals have come in just 20 appearances, and despite her missing a month of league football due to Australia’s participation in FIFA Women’s World Cup France 2019, where she scored five goals in four matches.
Nadeshiko set for Canada test as Tokyo 2020 draws closer
Tokyo: Olympic hosts Japan are set to embark on one of the first major steps towards their Tokyo 2020 campaign, with head coach Asako Takakura announcing her squad for their October 6 meeting with Canada in Shizuoka.
Key stars like Saki Kumagai, Mana Iwabuchi and Yui Hasegawa were named alongside a number of younger players as the Nadeshiko gather for the first time since their Round of 16 elimination at the FIFA Women’s World Cup France 2019.
Sydney: Australia will play their first matches on home soil since the FIFA Women’s World Cup France 2019 when they face Chile in a two-match series in November.
Head coach Ante Milicic welcomed confirmation that his team will take on the rising South American nation as Australia begins to set their sights on qualification for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.
“It is fantastic that we have been able to secure these international friendlies. Chile performed admirably in a difficult group at this year’s FIFA Women’s World Cup in France and will provide a strong challenge for us as we seek to develop as a unit leading up to our Tokyo 2020 Olympic Qualifiers which commence in February next year," said Milicic.
Decisive battles ahead as Tokyo 2020 reaches one-year countdown
Kuala Lumpur: With the countdown clock reaching the one-year milestone, elite athletes around the world are gearing up for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics, but the footballers of Asia will face pivotal tests long before the Games begin.
Four Asian teams, including host Japan, will compete in the men’s football tournament, while Asako Takakura’s Asian champions will be one of three to take part in the women’s competition, making the battle to represent the Continent one with little margin for error.
Both competitions have already seen dramatic qualifying action in Asia. The Road to Tokyo’s women’s football tournament began in Asia on November 4, 2018, while the first men’s qualifiers got underway on March 22, 2019, with final tournaments to be staged in early 2020 to determine the Continent's representatives.