Our Matildas produced an emphatic Round of 16 performance to defeat Denmark and book their place in the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup Quarter Finals.
A host of former City stars played a crucial role in front of an electric crowd of 75,784 at Stadium Australia as the Matildas proved too strong for their European opponents, sealing a 2-0 win and a place in the Quarters.
AUSTRALIA 2-0 DENMARK
Without a spare seat in the house, the Matildas walked out unchanged following their 4-0 win over Canada in their final group stage fixture.
Head Coach, Tony Gustavsson, named a starting XI that once again included four former City stars.
With Sam Kerr named on the bench, former City captain, Steph Catley, wore the captain’s armband as she led out Australia. The City legend was joined by her former club teammates Ellie Carpenter, Emily van Egmond and Alanna Kennedy.
With a spot in the Quarters on the line, Denmark started the game strongly in front of a passionate Australian crowd. Kerr’s former club teammate, Pernille Harder, looked dangerous early, but the Matildas stood tall at the back to nullify the Danes impact.
As the half progressed, Australia looked increasingly dangerous and were able to find the breakthrough in the 29th minute as they pounced on errant Danish cross.
A sumptuous ball from Manchester City’s Mary Fowler was met by the in-form Caitlin Foord, who produced a brilliantly composed finished to hand the Matildas a 1-0 first-half advantage.
With 25 minutes played in the second period, Australia doubled their lead and booked their spot in the Quarters where they will take on the winner of France and Morocco.
It was former Manchester City star, Hayley Raso, who sealed the win, capping off a brilliant team goal. Former City championship-winning star, Emily van Egmond, showed great composure in the box to lay it off to Raso, who made no mistake in doubling Australia’s advantage.
The icing on the cake for the Aussies was the return of captain Sam Kerr, making her first appearance in the tournament following her calf injury on the eve of the Matildas first game.
The Matildas now await their final eight opponents, as France take on Morocco in Adelaide on Tuesday 8 August.
Australia will face the winner of France v Morocco on Saturday in Brisbane.
Australia v France/Morocco
Saturday 12 August, 5:00pm (AEST)
Live on Channel 7 & Optus Sport