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The venue for next year's Women's World Cup final will be the setting, as John Herdman's squad hosts the European champion at BC Place in a midweek international friendly.

VANCOUVER — With World Cup fever gripping much of the globe, including Canada's west coast, the build-up to the next Women's World Cup takes another step forward at BC Place on Wednesday night.

With the men's version currently in full swing in Brazil, Canada's women continue their preparations as next year's Women's World Cup hosts with a midweek friendly clash versus European champion Germany.

It is another difficult test for John Herdman's side, which is coming off a creditable 1-1 friendly draw versus archrival United States in Winnipeg, Manitoba, last month.

Currently sitting at number two in the FIFA Women's World Rankings, Germany arrives in Vancouver on the back of a 15-match unbeaten run that stretches back to last summer's successful Women's European Championship campaign in Sweden.

"Germany are a fantastic team," Herdman said in Tuesday's pre-match press conference at BC Place. "I'm thankful that they chose to come over and play against us. Hopefully, we can attract more of the top teams in the build-up to the World Cup.

"It's an important time for us. We've spent two years building this team since the 2012 Olympics. Every year, we've tried to take a step forward, and you can't get a bigger test than this (on Wednesday). But if we want to win a World Cup in Canada, you've got to be ready to beat these teams on the way to the title. We've got to learn to do that."

On course for World Cup qualification from European zone Group 1, Wednesday's friendly offers Silvia Neid's German players a chance to familiarize themselves with the conditions they will face next summer.

"Canada is a strong team with good players and good, different systems (of play). They’ve improved a lot in the last few months," Neid said through a translator. "For us, it was also important to test (ourselves) on the artificial turf, which is unusual for us, but we have to cope with that."

The Germans will also be mindful of the qualities that Canada's Christine Sinclair can offer. Always excited to play in front of a home crowd, the Burnaby, B.C., native will want to show Canadian supporters that her side is one of the contenders for next year's title.

"I think one thing we are focusing on is consistency," said Sinclair. "We're coming off a pretty good result against the Americans. Now, it's a matter of can we do it again against another one of the best teams in the world because that's what is going to be expected of us in the World Cup."

Nearly two years has passed since Canada's memorable bronze-medal showing at the London Olympics. In that time, Herdman has tried to refresh his squad with new faces and new tactics in a bid to make the North Americans contenders in a year's time.

"Moving into 2015, it’s about integrating new players, new ways, and new styles," Herdman said. "That’s a foundation and that foundation can be a curse and an opportunity - the curse being the expectation of people. The (Canadian) public has got to look beyond that achievement (in 2012) and say 'Look, this is a new Canada with a new approach, a new style, and a new set of players'. Even if it is the same group, they have to be new people, they have to be a different level to what they were in 2012."

After facing Germany on Wednesday, Canada's preparations will continue with an important two-match friendly series versus Women's World Cup holder Japan in October.