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Matildas’ Olympic qualifiers to be played in full under amended schedule

The Matildas’ Olympic qualifying tournament will take place in full after an around-the-clock lobbying effort from Football Federation Australia convinced global bodies – including European clubs – to allow for an amended schedule that will stretch beyond the end of the international window.

Despite the Chinese national team being quarantined in Brisbane due to new medical advice surrounding coronavirus, they will be able to play all three of their matches against Australia, Taiwan and Thailand.

FFA chief executive James Johnson has spearheaded efforts that have ensured the Olympic qualifiers will proceed.

FFA chief executive James Johnson has spearheaded efforts that have ensured the Olympic qualifiers will proceed.Credit:AAP

Games will go ahead on the initial dates – Monday, Thursday and Sunday next week – but there will be an additional match day on Wednesday, February 12, when the Matildas will meet China at Campbelltown Stadium.

The FIFA window is due to close next Sunday – straight after the qualifiers were originally slated to be held – but an FFA statement said the federation had worked with European teams, as well as FIFA, the Asian Football Confederation, the Chinese Football Association and the federal and Queensland governments to allow for the extra match day, which may see some players miss domestic fixtures with their clubs.

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