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England, right down to 10, advances by way of PKs, Australia paves its path to the quarters – Equalizer Soccer

James Whitehead / SPP

The third day of the 2023 FIFA Girls’s World Cup knockout rounds began with England beating Nigeria in a penalty shootout and completed with Australia delivering a convincing defeat to Denmark.

Couldn’t watch and must know what the large story is? That is what occurred on the third day of the World Cup Spherical of 16.

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England 0, Nigeria 0 (PK 4-2)

The Huge Story: Nigeria seemed to make historical past by profitable a knockout spherical match for the primary time in group historical past however when England went down a participant late within the second half they weren’t capable of capitalize and the match went to further time. England made it out of additional time and into penalties with a solitary shot whereas down a participant, however on the identical time, they solely allowed Nigeria one shot heading in the right direction which Mary Earps smothered simply. In penalties, a couple of large photographs by Nigeria allowed England to advance to the quarterfinals.

The Huge Second: Chloe Kelly clinched England’s transfer ahead by completely drilling this penalty into the higher 90.

What it means: Keira Walsh returned to England’s beginning 11 after being stretchered off within the second group stage match. She wasn’t as efficient as in these matches as early within the half the English backline actually wished to funnel all of their ahead motion by way of Walsh, who was getting defended fairly effectively by the Nigerian press.

Nigeria began the match on the entrance foot, getting 9 photographs within the first half together with one off the woodwork, and inflicting English goalkeeper Mary Earps to make a high quality save. The Nigerian defensive sport plan did a superb job of disrupting the English build-up. They stored the Lionesses from having any photographs till the twenty third minute when a harmful turnover by Nigeria compelled Chiamaka Nnadozie to make a diving save on this Alessia Russo shot.

It seemed like Nigeria had conceded a penalty within the thirty first minute when there was a push on England’s Rachel Daly by Nigeria’s Rasheedat Ajibade. The referee, Melissa Borjas, instantly whistled for the PK when Daly went down proper in entrance of her. With the ball already on the spot, and Georgia Stanway stepping again to take the shot, Borjas blew the whistle and motioned for an on-field overview. Three minutes after the preliminary foul, Borjas overturned her unique name on the sphere, and Nigeria was out of hassle for the time.

The second half went forwards and backwards lots, Nigeria had some possibilities, however aside from one other crossbar hit, weren’t capable of put it on body. England seemed harmful at instances. After Mary Earps wanted remedy within the 73rd minute, the next 5 minutes England was on the entrance foot however Nnadozie stored it scoreless. Within the eighty fifth minute, after an unique yellow card, England’s Lauren James was despatched off after a VAR overview confirmed her step on Houston Sprint and Nigeria ahead Michelle Alozie. After six minutes of stoppage time, the rating remained tied 0-0, and off to further time they went.

For Nigeria, dropping in penalties is a completely heartbreaking option to go away the event however on the finish of the day, they did have 20 photographs however solely 2 heading in the right direction for the evening. The alternatives have been there. This group nonetheless made historical past, and appears like they are going to proceed to enhance. If they will get the backing of their federation behind them, there isn’t a restrict to their development.

England will get to proceed their event run in opposition to the winner of Colombia vs. Jamaica however tonight did pose a number of questions for the squad. Walsh went from injured to a full 120 minutes, it’s unclear how a lot she’ll have within the tank for the quarterfinal match. Lauren James can be suspended for the following match after her crimson card and must hope that FIFA doesn’t add any further suspension.

— Taylor Vincent

Australia 2, Denmark 0

The Huge Story: Although the sport took a gradual and regular begin, two clear and collaborative targets from Australia and an absence of threatening offense from Denmark resulted in a 2-0 victory for the house group. A much-anticipated look from star Australian striker Sam Kerr within the eightieth minute additionally helped electrify the group, which can cheer on the Matildas as they transfer to the quarterfinals.

The Huge Second: The primary half of the primary half of Monday’s match featured even play from each side. Within the twenty ninth minute, nevertheless, ahead Caitlin Foord despatched the ball by way of the legs of Danish keeper Lene Christensen and located the again of the web, making the rating 1-0. This objective was not solely a confidence enhance for the house group, however was additionally a nasty omen for Denmark – the Pink and White have by no means received a sport within the 11 world cup eventualities wherein they’ve conceded the primary objective.

What it Means: Australia has proved, as soon as once more, that it’s a true contender within the 2023 World Cup. And though they would favor to not, the Matildas are demonstrating that they will win with out Kerr.  

The 2023 World Cup has been an thrilling and suspenseful event for Australia up to now. After wanting elimination within the eye within the group stage, the Matildas proved their skill to rise to the second with a defeat over reigning Olympic champions Canada, which moved them to the knockout spherical. Monday’s defeat of Denmark – a decently disciplined and environment friendly group coached in traditional European vogue – demonstrated as soon as once more that the Matildas are motivated, not intimidated, by authentic competitors. 

The Matildas’ successes have definitely been buoyed by being the house group – it does no hurt to have hundreds cheering your names – however the true supply of their triumphs up to now is the teamwork that they make use of in every match. Their second objective of the night within the seventieth minute was a real instance of this group effort that they’ve put ahead. When Mary Fowler’s preliminary shot on Christensen was blocked and redirected to the foot of Emily van Egmond, van Egmond redirected the ball to teammate Hayley Raso, who shot a rocket into the web, bringing Australia’s result in 2-0. The collaborative ahead actions and targets that the Matildas are capable of produce nearly make you overlook that their star striker sits on the bench. 

After all, an look from Sam Kerr within the eightieth minute – her first of the event – was not solely welcomed, however celebrated. And if Monday’s match is any indication, followers can hope to see her for longer as Australia takes on both France or Morocco within the quarterfinals. Kerr will little doubt make a distinction when she will get extra time on the sphere, however the Matildas know by now to not tremble in the event that they must tackle robust competitors with out her.

— Julie Schreiber



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