Australia to meet Sweden ahead of Olympics

The Matildas’ tough preparations for the Tokyo Olympics continue next month with a game again European heavyweights Sweden in Kalmar.

Thrashed 5-2 and 5-0 respectively by Germany and the Netherlands last month, the Matildas will have to improve to test the Swedes, who won a silver medal at the Rio Olympics five years ago and finished third at the 2019 Women’s World Cup.

The June 16 battle will be an early preview of what the Matildas can expect in Tokyo come July, with Sweden in Australia’s group along with the United States and New Zealand.

“Since learning of our opponents for the Games, we have quickly shifted our attention to ensuring we are best equipped for the matches ahead,” Sweden-born Matildas coach Tony Gustavsson said.

“April provided us with a lot of insights from the matches against Germany and the Netherlands.

“In Sweden we have another top team that will challenge us with a different

style and tactical set-up.

“Our concentration will be on continuing to build on our foundations and equipping the team to perform in Tokyo and the next phase is exciting as we will have a full squad come together.

“This is the type of experience we need to be ready for the Olympics so we will embrace it.”

Football Australia CEO James Johnson said it was vital the Matildas were provided with the “best platform for success”.

“That includes providing them with opportunities to play against world-class opponents,” Johnson said.

“The Games are a fantastic opportunity for all Australians to come together and support the Matildas and we are investing to ensure they are ready come that first match against New Zealand (on July 21).”

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