The 2023 Girls’s World Cup is in full swing, and these each day information provide the newest reporting from across the event in addition to betting strains, what-to-watch-for info and greatest reads. Examine in with ESPN all through the event as we deliver you the newest from Australia and New Zealand.
The lead: Sweden stun Japan to seal progress
AUCKLAND, New Zealand — The final of the previous Girls’s World Cup winners has been eradicated from the competitors, which means a brand new champion will likely be topped quickly.
Sweden shellshocked a Japan workforce that had appeared just like the event’s most dominant aspect up thus far, profitable 2-1 with targets from Amanda Ilestedt and Filippa Angeldal. Riko Ueki’s controversial 76th-minute penalty hit the bar earlier than a late Honoka Hayashi strike made the rating extra respectable — and, moments earlier than, Aoba Fujino hit the bar with a free kick that rolled throughout the goalline — however Sweden have been the higher aspect, producing extra and higher possibilities.
Unsurprisingly, Sweden’s opening aim got here from a set piece. Within the thirty second minute, Kosovare Asllani lofted a free kick into the field, which goalkeeper Ayaka Yamashita punched away. What adopted was 4 blocked photographs by Sweden gamers till the ball fell fortuitously in entrance of Ilestedt, who stepped in entrance of Japan protection to fit it previous Yamashita.
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Japan did not register a shot till the twenty fifth minute, and their first shot in goal got here within the thirty second minute as they struggled to deal with Sweden’s press.
“We have been speaking about being near them and maintaining on stress,” stated ahead Sofia Jakobsson afterwards. “If we could not win the primary ball, getting into for the second, and I feel that labored rather well within the first till we scored the second aim. Japan was rising and so they put stress on us, however I am tremendous pleased with how the workforce performed.”
Sweden will now face Spain within the semifinal and as Japan was the lone former champion left within the competitors, their exit signifies that solely groups which have by no means gained the Girls’s World Cup stay. — Caitlin Murray
Sights and sounds
Spain shaken however not stirred
An earthquake measuring 5.6 on the Richter Scale was recorded in Wellington at 11.53 a.m. native time on Friday — simply over an hour earlier than Spain’s quarterfinal win in opposition to Netherlands within the New Zealand capital.
For the New Zealand-based journalists within the media centre on the stadium, the pinging of alerts on their telephones confirmed that they’d skilled a “shake,” however the FIFA workers within the room have been unaware when requested whether or not the tremor, which was recognized as having an epicentre within the Cook dinner Straits between the North and South Islands, would influence on the sport itself.
The earthquake led to minor shaking in and across the stadium, and Spain coach Jorge Vilda stated that it didn’t distract his workforce from the problem of beating the Dutch — however he did reveal that his gamers had skilled tremors previous to the sport.
“We have been so focused on the sport that we did not really feel it [quake], though we felt some shakes on the resort the day earlier than,” Vilda stated. “The victory of Spain was the earthquake.”
Spain’s gamers reported feeling an earthquake earlier within the competitors when a 4.6 tremor shook Wellington on July 30 whereas the squad have been primarily based in Palmerston, a city to the north of the capital. — Mark Ogden
Can Spain attain Girls’s World Cup closing regardless of inner points?
Mark Ogden reacts to Spain’s 2-1 win over Netherlands and talks in regards to the points the workforce has had with the Spanish Federation.
A statue for Van der Gragt?
Stefanie van der Gragt had signalled her intention to retire on the finish of World Cup previous to the event, however the Netherlands defender couldn’t have wished for a extra eventful closing sport.
The 30-year-old Inter Milan defender scored a surprising equaliser for the Dutch after conceding a penalty for a reckless handball. And with the sport drifting in the direction of extra-time, she virtually scored an own-goal with a mis-hit clearance that pressured goalkeeper Daphne van Domselaar right into a save.
Van der Gragt’s hopes of bowing out with a World Cup winners’ medal got here to an finish when Salma Paralluelo settled the tie with an impressive solo aim within the 111th minute. However whereas he accepts Van der Gragt’s determination to retire, Dutch coach Andries Jonker recommended that, if she would not change her thoughts, a statue needs to be inbuilt her honour.
“She just isn’t one of the best participant on the planet however she is possibly one of the best defender,” Jonker stated. “She is the sort of defender that the sport simply would not produce anymore. I feel she deserves a statue for what she has performed for the Netherlands and the sport. We respect her so much, nevertheless it’s her determination. If she modified her thoughts, she can be welcome.” — Mark Ogden
Colombia ‘decongest’ with a dinner out
SYDNEY — No matter what awaits Colombia of their quarterfinal assembly with England on Saturday, Nelson Abadía and his aspect live as much as his declaration following their 1-0 win over Jamaica within the spherical of 16: “We need to write historical past, we need to make historical past. It’s higher to make historical past than inform historical past.”
Not solely have Las Cafeteras already bested their excessive watermark on this event (a round-of-16 look in Canada in 2015), they’re now the lone nation from the Americas — north or south — left standing. However historical past makers not often accomplish that with out feeling an added weight of expectation, anticipation and apprehension. That is to say nothing of the day-to-day grind that wears away on the physique and thoughts throughout prolonged time spent overseas, in camp, at a significant event. So, forward of their conflict with the Lionesses, Abadía and his aspect took a break.
“After six weeks of camp, generally you could have a match that’s simply psychological, like this one,” he stated on Friday. “As a result of it will open the door to one of the best 4 on the planet, so we would have liked to decongest, mentally decongest the workforce so they may discover themselves. For slightly little bit of recreation, we went out for dinner, obtained out of the resort routine that may also be slightly fatiguing as a participant and as a coach. Generally it may be fairly tough. We needed to deliver again the normalcy of residing collectively, so we took a day without work simply to loosen up and now we’re again. It isn’t that we distanced ourselves from the match, as a result of we obtained ourselves extra [mentally] agency within the face of it.”
Colombia will begin as underdogs in opposition to England at Stadium Australia, however having already defeated runners-up Germany within the group stage, neither Abadía nor ahead Mayra Ramírez appeared overawed by the European champions.
“We all know they’re sturdy, however Colombia has proven that they’ve expertise, that they sacrifice on the pitch,” Ramírez stated. “Due to points with destiny, we needed to face the champion of Europe and the runner-up of Europe,” Abadía added. “Germany was a fantastic workforce and now now we have to face England. It is a match that it is advisable to play: each match is a distinct story, a distinct plan, a distinct technique, and we’ll be engaged on that.” — Joey Lynch
How England can cope with out James: ‘We’re not outlined by one participant’
Beth England reacts to Lauren James’ two-match suspension forward of the Lionesses’ quarterfinal conflict in opposition to Colombia in Sydney.
England’s journey from fish and chips to World Cup
SYDNEY — Beth England has been used within the super-sub position at this World Cup for England, and it is a “pinch me” second for the striker who used to make ends meet by working in a fish and chips store in Barnsley.
When she broke by for the Doncaster Belles within the inaugural WSL again in 2011, she did her A-Ranges, performed soccer and labored in a single day to fund driving classes. She’d work night time shifts on Fridays and Saturdays within the Wellington Avenue takeaway in Barnsley.
On Thursday, she was going through the media in Sydney, having performed in three of England’s 4 matches at this event, together with scoring her penalty within the Lionesses’ 4-2 shootout win over Nigeria within the spherical of 16. It is a tremendous return for a striker who pressured her method into the squad by making a midseason transfer to Tottenham to get common soccer.
“Once I look again to working within the chippy, doing a shift till 5 a.m. and clearing up drunk peoples’ meals or alcohol bottles, I am now enjoying in a significant event. That for me may be very a lot a ‘pinch me’ second,” England stated. “Everybody’s story is completely different, everybody has obtained their very own method wherein they obtained right here. I feel it is fairly particular as a result of it is actually humbling as properly that with issues like that you’re only a regular particular person however you then come to a event like this and suppose, ‘Wow, there are thousands and thousands and thousands and thousands of eyes watching me in these moments.’
“I feel it is particular and it is moments like that you may actually treasure in your profession as a result of the place you’ve got come from and the way onerous you’ve got labored to get to what you obtain.”
England’s workforce base is in Terrigal, a seaside city north of Sydney. Alongside the beachfront are quite a few seafood eating places, and England is a connoisseur of which fish to go for.
“I am most likely slightly little bit of a fish and chip snob as a result of I do know what a great fish is,” she stated. “I do not just like the pores and skin on my fish both. If anybody needed one battering, I ought to be capable of do a great job!” — Tom Hamilton
Matildas’ Hunt meets idol Renard
Marta’s impassioned speech earlier than her closing World Cup sport noticed her converse in regards to the lack of ladies position fashions for her rising up. “We now have gamers to look as much as [in women’s football] and that might not have occurred if we had stayed nonetheless on the first hurdle we confronted,” she stated.
The persistence of her technology, and former generations, has counted for one thing with the present crop of gamers having the ability to listing off girls as their footballing heroes. One such participant is Australia’s Clare Hunt, a no-nonsense centre-back. Lining up for under her eleventh sport in her nationwide workforce profession, Hunt had two defensive idols rising up: her Matildas teammate Clare Polkinghorne, and French icon Wendie Renard.
“Wendie Renard was a task mannequin for me. I noticed her composure at a younger age and needed to emulate that not directly,” Hunt instructed media. “I really feel like I know how that Wendie performs as a result of I used to observe her as a child. She’s a tremendous athlete, centre-back, chief.”
That Renard and Hunt will now do battle — principally at set items — whereas commanding their respective backlines is likely one of the indicators of progress of the ladies’s sport globally. You’ll be able to’t be what you possibly can’t see and lengthy might the children of at present have girls to look as much as on the pitch. — Marissa Lordinac
Gustavsson: If Sam Kerr is match, she’s beginning in opposition to France
Australia supervisor Tony Gustavsson says Matildas’ star ahead Sam Kerr will begin within the Girls’s World Cup quarterfinal conflict vs. France if she’s absolutely match.
Information of the day
For Tony Gustavsson there is no such thing as a query as to what Sam Kerr’s involvement in Australia’s quarterfinal in opposition to France will seem like if she is match. “I need to be very clear right here now to say if Sam is match to play 90 minutes, she’s beginning,” Gustavsson instructed reporters on the eve of the aspect’s quarterfinal. “There’s not even a query and the workforce is aware of it. We’re speaking about Sam Kerr right here, whether or not she is able to play 90 minutes plus additional time, that is to be determined tonight. However there is no query in any way that if she is [fit], she’s beginning.”
Spain teenager Salma Paralluelo made a spectacular influence off the bench to ship La Roja into the semifinals for the primary time. The 19-year-old Barcelona winger determined a tense quarterfinal when she scored the extra-time winner in La Roja’s 2-1 win over 2019 runners-up Netherlands. The previous sprinter showcased her velocity for the aim, racing up the pitch earlier than sidestepping a defender and firing a left-footed shot that ricocheted off the submit and in.
Paralluelo made a memorable debut with the senior Spain workforce solely final November, scoring a hat-trick in a 7-0 win over Argentina in a pleasant. She had been one among Spain’s prime sprinters, competing on the European indoor championships within the 400 metres in 2019, earlier than giving up athletics to focus solely on soccer.
“The aim from Salma, it was sheer pleasure,” stated coach Jorge Vilda. “Salma is a participant with huge potential and he or she’s not reached her greatest but. She’s a really younger participant who has been coaching one 12 months in soccer particularly, and one of the best of Salma we’ll see it sooner or later. Now she’s glorious, however sooner or later it should be a lot, rather more.”
England star Lauren James has been hit with a two-match suspension by FIFA for the purple card she picked up in opposition to Nigeria. The size of suspension signifies that if England beat Colombia on Saturday then James will miss the semifinal in opposition to both Australia or France. Nevertheless, the two-match ban means she will likely be accessible for the ultimate or third-place playoff relying on how the Lionesses fare in the event that they attain the ultimate 4.
James was proven a purple card within the 87th minute of England’s round-of-16 match in opposition to Nigeria after she was seen stamping on Michelle Alozie’s again. England ultimately obtained by the tough tie 4-2 on penalties however needed to handle additional time with 10 gamers. She might have picked up a three-match suspension — due to this fact ending her World Cup — however the FIFA disciplinary committee deemed the offence worthy of a two-match ban, the decrease finish of the size for critical foul play.
Match previews, Saturday Aug. 12
Matildas have warned world they’re extra than simply Sam Kerr
The Far Put up podcast talk about the realisation for the Matildas and different World Cup contenders that they pose a large risk with or with out Sam Kerr.
Australia vs. France – (Lang Park, Brisbane; 5 p.m. native / 3 a.m. ET / 8 a.m. UK)
“We aren’t enjoying in opposition to a workforce. We’re enjoying in opposition to an entire nation,” France coach Hervé Renard instructed a information convention on Friday. His aspect face the co-hosts in a packed stadium in Brisbane however are prepared for the furore. It’s value noting that France have had 17 completely different starters on this event and each single on-field participant has featured at the very least as soon as to date. That’s is the full reverse for the Matildas who’ve hardly rotated and used minimal subs.
A whole lot of the prematch speak has been across the health of Australia star Sam Kerr, however Renard is not bothered. “It isn’t my drawback whether or not she begins or not,” he stated. “We can’t change our fashion. They’ve performed properly with out her offensively however I might not change any of my forwards for theirs.” Certainly, France have all their gamers accessible and Renard will preserve his 4-4-2 formation to assault Australia.
Again on July 14, the hosts beat them 1-0 in a pleasant simply earlier than the beginning of the competitors however it is a full completely different sport. The important thing, possibly greater than Kerr’s presence on the pitch, will likely be methods to cope with the stress of a World Cup quarterfinal. Focus will likely be essential and the event might get one of the best of both workforce. — Julien Laurens
England vs. Colombia – (Stadium Australia, Sydney; 8.30 p.m. native / 6.30 a.m. ET / 11.30 a.m. BST)
England are braced for a hostile crowd once they face Colombia, because the stadium is anticipated to be dominated by Colombian followers. England wish to up their sport after their nervy 4-2 win on penalties in opposition to Nigeria within the spherical of 16 and goalkeeper Mary Earps stated the “greatest is but to return” from the Lionesses, however they will be cautious of the risk Colombia pose.
Colombia supervisor Nelson Abadia has stated his workforce are enjoying in seven World Cup finals [potentially all their games at this tournament] — this their fifth, after profitable all three of their group matches in opposition to South Korea, Germany and Morocco, then edging previous Jamaica 1-0 within the spherical of 16. Linda Caicedo, Catalina Usme and Mayra Ramírez would be the keys as soon as extra.
England are favourites and are hoping to get the job performed in regular time, avoiding the anguish of a penalty shootout. “I hope we do not have that a lot stress,” supervisor Sarina Wiegman stated. “We have seen on this event not one sport is simple for anybody. It is so aggressive. It is the great thing about the sport and the expansion of the ladies’s sport. I hope it is determined earlier than that however let’s hope it goes our method.” — Tom Hamilton
Options of the day
After lighting up Girls’s World Cup, Japan are out
Japan’s dream run on the FIFA Girls’s World Cup has ended within the quarterfinals. Maybe 2023 simply wasn’t their time but.
USWNT coach candidates to exchange Andonovski after World Cup
With Vlatko Andonovski anticipated to depart as USWNT coach quickly, who within the soccer world has the expertise and observe file to take the job? We break down 11 potential candidates starting from “should name” to lengthy shot.
Matildas steeled by experiences, thriving on World Cup rollercoaster
Australia will safe a maiden World Cup semifinal berth ought to they defeat France in Brisbane, and their followers will re-board the emotional rollercoaster hoping for a couple of extra journey.
And eventually …
SYDNEY — Not solely is Australia’s coming quarterfinal in opposition to France the most important sport in Matildas’ historical past, nevertheless it’s additionally set to be one of many greatest sporting occasions the nation has seen in many years.
Tickets are essentially the most in-demand merchandise since Taylor Swift introduced she was touring Down Beneath, whereas the thrill surrounding the fixture has seen councils throughout the nation present a number of stay websites the place supporters can communally watch the match. Rod Laver Area (residence of the Australian Open tennis grand slam) and Sydney’s Olympic Park (which can host England’s quarterfinal with Colombia later that night) are being reworked into impromptu watch events.
After the Matildas’ win over Denmark set rankings information, on Wednesday free-to-air rights holders Channel 7 took the extraordinary step of shifting to broadcast the sport on its most important channel in all of Australia’s states and territories, which, in flip, delayed the beginning of its flagship information bulletin. Such a transfer is not unprecedented in a sporting context, nevertheless, you possibly can depend the variety of instances that is occurred for soccer earlier than on one hand and have fingers left over.
Maybe most terribly, the reigning overlord of the Australian sporting scene, the AFL, has moved to delay the opening bounce of its blockbuster conflict between Carlton and Melbourne till 7.30 p.m. native time to assist this transfer. Moreover, the MCG, Perth’s Optus Stadium, and SCG, that are all internet hosting AFL video games that day, will put the Matildas on their massive screens earlier than and after their respective fixtures. Adelaide Crows coach Matthew Nicks, whose aspect travels to face the Brisbane Lions similtaneously the Matildas sport remarked: “If I might, I would be watching the Matildas as properly.” — Joey Lynch
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