Canada captain Sinclair unavailable for SheBelieves Cup

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FILE PHOTO: Soccer: CONCACAF Women's Olympic Qualifying-Canada at USA

(Reuters) - Injured captain Christine Sinclair, soccer's most prolific goal scorer, is among seven national team players unavailable for next week's SheBelieves Cup in Orlando, Canada Soccer said on Saturday.

Sinclair and midfielder Diana Matheson did not travel to Orlando due to injury while goalkeeper Erin McLeod and defender Bianca St-Georges returned to their clubs after picking up injuries at camp, Canada Soccer said in a news release.

Canada Soccer also said that "despite a concerted effort" defender Kadeisha Buchanan of Olympique Lyonnais and forward Jordyn Huitema and fullback Ashley Lawrence, both of Paris Saint-Germain FC, were denied release by their French clubs.

Also competing in Feb. 18-24 tournament, where matches will conducted with limited attendance, are top-ranked United States, Brazil and Argentina.

"Given the new roster realities, what a great opportunity for players to rise up and show that they can compete at this Olympic level," Canada head coach Bev Priestman said in a news release.

"The tournament will be used to assess the player pool and players’ readiness to achieve our goals at the Olympic Games."

(Reporting by Frank Pingue in Toronto, editing by Pritha Sarkar)