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Red Stars trio to take on hosts France on Thursday

Chicago, Illinois – Canadian Women’s National Team Head Coach John Herdman has called up Chicago Red Stars standouts Karina LeBlanc, Adriana Leon and Melissa Tancredi for Thursday’s clash with hosts France. The match is part of the Canucks’ preparations for this summer’s FIFA Women’s World Cup in Canada.

While international legend LeBlanc looks to challenge for the starting spot in goal, rising star Leon and two-time World Cup and Olympic veteran Tancredi hope to make a case for inclusion in their team’s front line. Both strikers featured prominently in Canada’s recent Cyprus Cup run, which saw the side fall 1-0 to England in the final.

Two years after their last meeting with France, the Canadians are back in Europe to take on a Les Bleues squad that is widely considered one of the favorites to win the World Cup.

The 23 players selected by Head Coach Herdman arrived in Paris early on Monday and trained on Tuesday and Wednesday in preparation for the game at the Stade Robert-Bodin in Bondoufle, France, which is scheduled to kick off at 2 p.m. CT (9 p.m. local time).

Canada is unbeaten in the last two meetings between the two sides, having earned a win and a draw. While the win came as part of the team’s historic Olympic Bronze medal run of 2012, the draw was a 1-1 result on April 4, 2013, at the Stade du Ray in Nice, France. Kaylyn Kyle scored the late equalizer for the Canucks in the friendly.

Come June, France will be locking horns with England, Colombia and Mexico in World Cup Group F. The European giants will be facing England in Moncton on June 9 and Colombia on June 13 at the same venue, followed by the final group game against Mexico, which will take place in Ottawa on June 17.

Canada kicks off its quest for the most coveted of soccer trophies with a June 6 matchup against China PR at Edmonton’s Commonwealth Stadium. Next, the squad will look to top Red Stars defender Abby Erceg and New Zealand on June 11, also in Edmonton. The Netherlands will be the opponent for the Canadians’ final group fixture, to be played in Montreal on June 15. The World Cup final will be held in Vancouver on July 5.

Fans can follow Thursday’s between Canada and France live on Twitter via @CanadaSoccerEN.

Chicago Red Stars fans can see all of their international stars in action during the club’s 2015 NWSL campaign, which kicks off on April 18 with the massive home opener against Hope Solo, Megan Rapinoe and current Shield holders Seattle Reign FC. Single-game and season tickets may be purchased by visiting www.chicagoredstars.com or by calling 773-698-6001.

Complete CanWNT Roster by Position:

GK- Stephanie Labbe | unattached / sans club
GK- Karina LeBlanc | USA / Chicago Red Stars
GK- Erin McLeod | USA / Houston Dash
D- Kadeisha Buchanan | USA / West Virginia University
D- Allysha Chapman | USA / Houston Dash
D- Robyn Gayle | unattached
D- Carmelina Moscato | unattached
D- Marie-Eve Nault | unattached
D- Rebecca Quinn | USA / Duke University
D- Lauren Sesselmann | USA / Houston Dash
D- Rhian Wilkinson | USA / Portland Thorns FC
D- Emily Zurrer | unattached
M- Kaylyn Kyle | USA / Portland Thorns FC
M- Jonelle Filigno | USA / Sky Blue FC
M- Jessie Fleming | CAN / London NorWest SC
M- Desiree Scott | ENG / Notts County Ladies FC
M- Sophie Schmidt | unattached
M- Ashley Lawrence | USA / West Virginia University
F- Josée Bélanger | unattached
F- Janine Beckie | USA / Texas Tech University
F- Adriana Leon | USA / Chicago Red Stars
F- Christine Sinclair | USA / Portland Thorns FC
F- Melissa Tancredi | USA / Chicago Red Stars

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