Gemma Grainger’s Cymru will play three matches during the February international window as they enter the Pinatar Cup tournament for the first time.
Cymru will start the eight-team tournament in southeast Spain against Scotland on Wednesday 16 February. The two sides previously met in Parc y Scarlets last June when Cymru lost 1-0 to a side that have recently competed in a FIFA Women’s World Cup and UEFA Women’s Euro finals.
The tournament is a knockout format, but placement matches will guarantee three fixtures for every team. Cymru’s second match will be against either Belgium or Slovakia, on Saturday 19 February, before a third match against either Russia, Poland, Republic of Ireland, Hungary on Tuesday 22 February.
Cymru will use the matches to prepare for their remaining four 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup qualifiers. Grainger’s side currently sit second in the group and will face top of the table France at home on Friday 8 April (venue TBC).
We see the three games at Pinatar as an opportunity to help us continue with our preparations to qualify and compete for a World Cup. It’s a great opportunity to play against higher ranked opposition, and we’re looking to expose ourselves to those opportunities as often as possible.
The players will be excited for this. It’s a tournament environment and we want to qualify and compete in major tournaments. Three games in six days effectively replicates a major tournament so we’re going to use that environment to get everything we can out of it, both on and off the pitch.
Cymru fixtures (Times GMT)
Cymru v Scotland – 16/2/22 – 14:30 – Pinatar Arena
Cymru v Belgium/Slovakia – 19/2/22 – TBC – Pinatar Arena
Cymru v TBC* – 22/2/22 – TBC – Pinatar Arena or La Manga
*Russia, Poland, Republic of Ireland or Hungary