Preview: Jamaica takes on a Marta-less Brazil in first Women’s World Cup

Reggae Girlz
GLASGOW, SCOTLAND — MAY 28: The Jamaica players celebrate the opening goal of the game by Cheyna Matthews of Jamaica during the Women's International Friendly between Scotland and Jamaica at Hampden Park on May 28, 2019 in Glasgow, Scotland. (Photo by Mark Runnacles/Getty Images).

Grenoble, France (June 8, 2019) — For the firs time ever, the Jamaican Women’s National Team will compete on the world’s biggest stage. Jamaica has never qualified for the FIFA Women’s World Cup. That changed in October 2018.

Now, the Reggae Girlz are in France and ready to make a splash. Certainly the underdog in their group, Jamaica begins their World Cup against Brazil. While looking at the two teams on paper, one would say Brazil has this in the bag. However, Brazil has not found consistency in the last two years.

Brazil’s last victory was in the Tournament of Nations back in July 2018. Since then, Brazil hasn’t even picked up a draw. The Brazilians have suffered and scratched their head in nine-straight losses.

Can the tide change against newly minted World Cup team Jamaica? Or will Jamaica add to the doom list for Brazil. Is it time to hit the panic button? These questions will be answered tomorrow during the match. However, for now, we preview the match at Last Word on Soccer, as we follow all CONCACAF teams in France.

Jamaica WNT vs. Brazil WNT
FIFA Women’s World Cup

Stade des Alpes
June 9, 2019 — 9:30 a.m. ET

Where to Watch: Fox Sports

What to Watch For

The Recent Jamaican Additions

Jamaica’s roster is a mix of various different players. While that’s the case for plenty of national teams, the difference is that there are many dual nationals that have quickly changed allegiance to Jamaica.

Cheyna Matthews, a forward for the Washington Spirit in the NWSL, didn’t compete in World Cup qualifying. She has only three appearances with the Jamaican team. Meanwhile, that same case goes for Tiffany Cameron, a former Canadian international, and Havana Solaun, who only has two appearances to her name.

However, the player to really watch for Jamaica is a recent college standout. Khadija “Bunny” Shaw had a successful collegiate career for two years with the Tennessee Vols. Shaw has 22 appearances for the Jamaican team and has scored a whopping 31 goals. She’s been part of the Jamaican national team since 2015.

Just yesterday, it was announced that Bordeaux, a French club, signed Shaw to a one-year contract. Now, she’ll be showing off her skills in the country of her new club.

The Big Injury

One breath of relief for the Jamaicans is not having to go against arguably one of the greatest women’s soccer players in the world. Marta, the Brazilian powerhouse forward, is out for tomorrow’s match with an ankle injury. Marta is currently the record holder for most goals scored in a FIFA Women’s World Cup, with 15 goals.

Losing Marta is certainly going to put a hole in Brazil’s offense. However, how big of a hole will it really be? Brazil has other accomplished forwards, including North Carolina Courage striker Debinha and veteran Cristiane.

Prediction: Jamaica 1, Brazil 1

Jamaica has a chance to pull through three points. However, earning one point against a team like Brazil could be huge. Jamaica has an interesting group. There’s a lot of question marks with Italy, as the history between Jamaica and Italy is virtually unknown. Australia has one of the greatest goal-scorers in the history of women’s soccer in Sam Kerr. However, the Australian defense is shaky and inconsistent.

Jamaica could scoop up three points here, but even one point could help them in their journey to the knockout rounds.

 

Embed from Getty Images

LEAVE A REPLY

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.