Following their history-making achievements at the 2023 Women’s World Cup, Paige Bailey-Gayle and Jamaica Women faced a double header against Canada, looking to qualify for next summer’s 2024 Olympic Games in Paris.
Reigning Olympic champions Canada simply proved too strong, however, with Bailey-Gayle on the bench as Jamaica lost the first leg 2-0 in Kingston.
Bailey-Gayle did start the second leg in Toronto on Tuesday night, and impressed on the occasion of her eighth international cap with her defensive work-rate as the Reggae Girlz repelled.
Jamaica would even pull a goal back in the first-half through Drew Spence's brilliant free-kick, but Canada roared back, Cloe Lacasse rising highest from a corner to head them level on the night soon after.
Jordyn Huitema put the tie out of sight early in the second-half before Bailey-Gayle left the field in the 61st minute, and with only 12 women's teams across the world competing at next summer's Olympics, Jamaica's qualification bid was sadly brought to an end.
As a result of the defeat, they will also need to qualify for next summer's 2024 CONCACAF Women's Gold Cup via a different qualification path, over the course of the next two international breaks (the end of October, and mid-February 2024).
On closer shores, midfielder Anna Filbey and forward Elise Hughes – who has scored six times in four games so far this season – were called up by Wales for their first matches in the inaugural UEFA Women’s Nations League.
The results of the competition will be used to determine the leagues for the Euro 2025 qualifiers, with the top two teams also qualifying for the 2024 Summer Olympics.
Wales, ranked 29th in the world, were placed in Group A3 of the competition alongside Germany (sixth), Denmark (12th) and Iceland (14th).
They narrowly lost out 1-0 to Iceland in Reykjavik last week – Hughes came on for injury time as a late substitute, and Filbey did not feature – before a heavy loss to Denmark in Cardiff on Tuesday evening in which neither Palace player came off the bench.
In the same competition in Group B1, defender Hayley Nolan was recalled to the Republic of Ireland squad.
Although Nolan did not add to her three senior caps, Ireland enjoyed their opening Nations League matches at home to Northern Ireland (a 3-0 win) and away in Hungary (a dominant 4-0 win).
All times BST.
Jamaica – Bailey-Gayle
- Sat, 23rd September: Jamaica 0-2 Canada (Bailey-Gayle was an unused substitute)
- Wed, 27th September: Canada 2-1 Jamaica (Bailey-Gayle played the first hour and won her eighth cap as Jamaica were defeated in Toronto)
Wales – Filbey & Hughes
- Fri, 22nd September: Iceland 1-0 Wales (Hughes came on in the 89th minute in Reykjavik; Filbey did not feature)
- Tue, 26th September: Wales 1-5 Denmark (Neither Palace player featured from the bench)
Republic of Ireland – Nolan
- Sat, 23rd September: Republic of Ireland 3-0 Northern Ireland (Nolan was not named in the matchday squad)
- Tue, 26th September: Hungary 0-4 Republic of Ireland (Nolan was on the bench but did not feature)
Australia U23s – Doran
- Tue, 26th September: Scotland 0-1 Australia (Doran came on in the second-half and scored the winner for her side in the friendly encounter)
England U19s – Dennis, Guyatt & Potter
- Wed, 20th September: England 5-0 Denmark (Dennis played the first-half and scored a brace; Guyatt played the second-half; Potter came on for the final 18 minutes)
- Tue, 26th September: England 3-3 Germany (Potter started, assisted and scored; Guyatt also started the match, playing 63 minutes; Dennis played the last seven minutes)