World Cup for Women's Germany 2011: Group D

Matildas through to Quarter Final
By Chris Dunkerley

Wednesday 6 July 2010 at Bay Arena, Leverkusen, Germany

Australia 2
(Kyah Simon 57', 87')
Norway 1
(Elise Thorsnes 56')

Australia's Matildas came from behind to defeat Norway 2-1 through a brace by Kyah Simon. In a scrappy game the Australians rarely got their normal game going but were too strong for Norway and now meet another Scandinavian team Sweden in a Quarterfinal (after they beat USA 2-1).

Taking a 1 goal buffer into the game Australia had the better of the early play with Lisa De Vanna terrorising the Norwegian defence. It was Norway however with their direct play that came closest to grabbing the first goal at 25min. Cecilie Pedersen latched onto a loose ball and only a smart one-handed parry over the crossbar denied the Norwegian.

With Ingvild Stensland wresling control of the midfield from Collete McCallum, she was able to drop long balls onto the centre of the Australian defence, that they seemed disorganised against. Elise Thorsnes provided the outlet, forcing Matildas 'keeper Melissa Barbieri into three saves in quick succession.

The Australians struggled to hold possession through the midfeld and were reduced to distance shooting, with Sam Kerr testing the keeper, Ingrid Hjelmseth, who was injured by her own defender and eventually replaced at half-time - from long range and with some fearless runs.

Lisa De Vanna found some space before half-time to run - and hit a strong strong shot from outside the penalty area into the arms of a well positioned Hjelmseth.

At 56 minutes Norway took the lead as EliseThorsnes took advantage of hesitation between central defender Servet Uzunlar and goalkeeper Barbieri to slip through and slot the ball into an empty net. 0-1

The Matildas responded immediately as Lisa De Vanna pick-pocketed a defender at the left side of the penalty, before pulling the ball back perfectly for Simon to steer the equaliser past substitute 'keeper Erika Skarbo. 1-1

The goals opened up the match considerably, and the same two players combined once more for Australia at 70 mins with De Vanna again the provider for Simon, but the tyro striker dragged her shot just wide with only the goalkeeper to beat.

Norway were so close to finding a winner and with it, passage to the quarter-finals, as Trine Ronning hit a superb free-kick only to be denied by the crossbar.

Australia scored the winner three minutes from time with Kyah Simon rising and producing a perfect header from Kim Carroll’s cross from the right. 2-1

In stoppage time Norway's substitute Isabell Herlovsen missed with a lobbed shot.

Australia will have to tighten up in defence and re-energise its midfield if it wants to keep progressing.

Eli Landsem, Norway's coach, said after the game, "we had laid out a plan for this match, and while I thought we played pretty well, the result didn’t go our way. The feeling of disappointment is indescribable. We had hopes of going further, but now we need to head home, and focus on training better and working harder. We’ll be back, and we’ll be a stronger team on our return.

Tom Sermanni, the Australian coach commented, "it was a really tough match. Norway made it very hard for us, and we had to fight to get a result. I’m so proud of my players, especially when they responded so quickly to going a goal down. The key moment of the game was when we scored almost immediately after falling behind – it brought us right back into it at a critical time. When I saw the Norwegians hit the woodwork, I suspected that it was going to be our day.

The next Matilda's game is against Sweden on 9:00pm Sunday 10 July, 2011.

2pm, Sunday 3 July 2010 at Bochum, Germany

Australia 2
(Kyah Simon 57', 87')
Norway 1
(Elise Thorsnes 56')

    Crowd: 18,474


    Player listing:
    1. Melissa BARBIERI (gk) (c), 3. Kim CARROLL, 4. Clare POLKINGHORNE, 7. Heather GARRIOCK, 8. Elise KELLOND-KNIGHT, 9. Caitlin FOORD (6. Ellyse PERRY +89’), 10. Servet UZUNLAR, 11. Lisa DE VANNA, 14. Collette McCALLUM, 17. Kyah SIMON, 20. Sam KERR (5. Laura ALLEWAY +80’)

    Substitutes not used: 18.Lydia WILLIAMS (gk), 2.Teigen ALLEN, 16.Lauren COLTHORPE, 19.Leena KHAMIS, 21.Casey DUMONT (gk), 12.Emily van EGMOND, 15.Sally SHIPARD, 13.Tameka BUTT

    Coach: Tom Sermani (Australia)

    Yellow Cards: Kim CARROLL 45'+2, Heather GARRIOCK (AUS) 68'
    Red Cards: Nil

    NORWAY :
    Player listing:
    [1] Ingrid HJELMSETH (gk) (12. Erika SKARBO +46' HT), [3] Maren MJELDE, [4] Ingvild STENSLAND (c), [7] Trine RONNING, [10] Cecilie PEDERSEN, [14] Gry Tofte IMS (9. Isabell HERLOVSEN +81'), [15] Hedda GARDSJORD, [16] Elise THORSNES, [17] Lene MYKJALAND, [18] Guro KNUTSEN MIENNA, [19] Emilie HAAVI (6. Kristine Wigdahl HEGLAND +46')

    Substitutes not used: [21] Caroline KNUTSEN (rgk), [2] Nora Holstad BERGE, [5] Marita Skammelsrud LUND, [8] Runa VIKESTAD, [11] Leni LARSEN KAURIN, [13] Madeleine GISKE, [20] Ingrid RYLAND

    Coach: Eli LANDSEM (Norway)

    Yellow Cards: Hedda GARDSJORD 90'+2
    Red Cards: Nil

    Referee: Estela ALVAREZ (Argentina) 7/10
    Assistant referees: Maria ROCCO (Argentina); Yoly GARCIA (Venezuela); Fourth official: Silvia REYES (Peru)

    Best players: Australia - Lisa De Vanna, Elise Kellond-Knight, Kyah Simon; Norway - Ingvild Stensland, Cecilie Pedersen

    Pitch rating: 8/10

    Game rating: 6/10

    Match Report by Chris Dunkerley

(The Matildas squad)

Disclaimer: The content of this report is the responsibility of the writer. Stats are either as recorded by the writer at the game, or as supplied by FIFA - no responsibility can be taken for their compete accuracy although we do strive for that.

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