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Virus fears force move for Matildas’ Olympic qualifiers

The Matildas’ 2020 Olympic qualifying matches, which were due to be played in China this week, have been moved to Australia following an outbreak of the deadly coronavirus.

Australia’s national women’s soccer team will now play Thailand, China and Chinese Taipei in Sydney given Wuhan, the original host city, is in lockdown. The tournament had previously been moved to Nanjing because of Wuhan’s unsuitability.

Matildas coach Ante Milicic speaks to the media during a press conference in Sydney last week.

Matildas coach Ante Milicic speaks to the media during a press conference in Sydney last week.Credit:AAP

“FFA is happy and willing to organise this Olympic Qualification Tournament, and we look forward to hosting the women’s senior national teams from China PR, Thailand and Chinese Taipei in February,” FFA chairman Chris Nikou said.

“The safety of all players, officials and fans is of paramount importance to Football Federation Australia and the Asian Football Confederation, and we are confident we will host a successful tournament here in Sydney.

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