Ellie Carpenter and her Matildas chase a spot at Tokyo Olympics

OLYMPIC BID: Western Football talent Ellie Carpenter is pushing for a spot at the Tokyo Games with the Matilidas. Photo: JOHNATHAN CARROLL
OLYMPIC BID: Western Football talent Ellie Carpenter is pushing for a spot at the Tokyo Games with the Matilidas. Photo: JOHNATHAN CARROLL

Cowra's Ellie Carpenter has been named in Australia's 20-player squad for the forthcoming Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games qualification matches to be played in China.

Carpenter was thrust into the spotlight four years ago when selected as part of the Matildas squad which competed at the Rio Games as a 16-year-old.

She was the youngest Australian Olympian at the Rio and the youngest ever female footballer to compete at the Olympics.

Since then talented defender Carpenter has become a mainstay of the Matildas line up with more than 30 national caps to her credit and she would love to add a second Olympics to her resume as well.

For the Matildas to qualify for the Tokyo Games they must first finish top-two in their Asian qualifying group then prevail in a home-and-away series against Korea Republic, Vietnam, or Myanmar in early March.

If ticking those boxes, Australia will take an 18-player squad to the Games.

It means that the Matildas as a whole must impress in fixtures against China PR, Chinese Taipei, and Thailand in China, but Carpenter must also shine individually.

"We have a great amount of experience in our squad, as well as some emerging talents, and I expect us to perform strongly in Wuhan," Ante Australian coach Milicic said.

"Together with my staff I have been keeping a very close eye on the Westfield W-League, and it is pleasing that many of our players have produced strong performances in the competition over the past two months.

"The great amount of consistency within our squad from November's series against Chile in Sydney and Adelaide means that we will be able to continue to make progress with many areas of our play from the moment we convene in Sydney as we build up to these crucial qualifiers.

"With only 20 places in this squad and 18 for Tokyo should we qualify, every player will need to show her best in this upcoming camp and help the nation take another step towards the Olympic Games."