As we head into the eleventh day of the Women’s World Cup, teams from Group H are set to play their second group stage matches; with the Korea Republic playing against Morocco where both sides are looking for their first win in this tournament and Germany who look to take a step closer to the Round of 16 as they face Colombia who look to do the same as well.
Also, nations from Group A will go into their third and final group games with the top two spots still up for grabs as Norway go up against the Philippines and Switzerland will face off against co-hosts New Zealand.
Let’s unfold all the results of these four games.
Korea Republic vs Morocco:
After losing their opening matches, both the Korea Republic and Morocco are heading to Adelaide’s Hindmarsh Stadium looking for their first win at the Women’s World Cup in order to close the gap for the top two spots in Group H. Morocco looked to put the pressure early on Korea’s defence where Hanane Ait El Haj whipped the ball into the box and Ibtissam Jraidi’s diving header found the back of the net in the sixth minute giving her side the early lead and as well scoring Morocco’s first ever goal in a Women’s World Cup.
Korea looked a bit shaky at the back with Hong Hyeji almost putting the ball into her own net in the 14th minute but fortunately, the ball went over the bar settling for a corner. Despite a goal down early, Korea were able to hold most of the possession still and had chances from Son Hwayeon and Park Eunsun in the 20th and 26th minute respectively but their efforts fell wide of the goal.
Morocco continued to look threatening when they went up the pitch with a chance from Salma Amani to double their advantage, but her shot crept over the bar. Sakina Ouzraoui and Ghizlane Chebbak had opportunities for Morocco’s second but their attempts were wide of the goal and therefore Morocco went into half-time with a one-goal lead.
Korea looked determined to find the equaliser in the second half with shots from Jang Selgi and Hong Hyeji, but both were unable to find the back of the net. Substitute Casey Phair had a chance for the leveller but just fell wide of the post. Similarly on the other end of the pitch, Morocco were on the counter-attack and substitute Rosella Hayane had a chance to seal the win for Morocco but she dragged her shot wide. The Atlas Lionesses’ were able to stay strong defensively in order to get their first win at a Women’s World Cup and with those three points secured, they still have a chance to qualify for the knockouts with a crucial game against Colombia.
Norway vs Philippines:
Coming into their last group match, Norway will look for nothing but a win as they face the Philippines at Eden Park and hope results go their way in order to secure a place in the Round of 16. It was a dream start for the Norwegians as Sophia Roman Haug opened the scoring in the sixth minute after a cross by Thea Bjelde found Haug in the box and her volley from a tight angle hit the post and found the back of the net.
Haug was on the scoresheet once again in the 17th minute after a deep cross from Vilde Boe Risa found her in the box and her header went over Oliva McDaniel and dipped into the goal for Norway’s second. Caroline Graham Hansen added a third goal in the 31st minute for Norway where her long-range effort struck the bottom corner of the goal, keeping Norway’s Women’s World Cup dreams alive.
The Scandinavian side had a four-goal advantage in the 48th minute after an own goal was scored by the Philippines’ Alicia Barker where Frida Maanum whipped in a low cross from the right and unfortunately Barker wasn’t able to clear it properly and the ball ended up in the back of her own net.
Shortly after, Guro Reiten went to ground after a challenge by Jaclyn Sawicki where there was a lengthy VAR check for a possible penalty. After looking at the monitor, referee Marie-Soleil Beaudoin awarded Norway a penalty and Reiten took responsibility. The Chelsea player slotted it into the bottom left corner increasing their lead to five.
It went from bad to worse for the Philippines after an aggressive challenge from Sofia Harrison on Thea Bjelde saw her dismissed as she received a red card reducing the Philippines to ten women.
To top off a dominant display, Norway scored a sixth goal in the fifth minute of added time through another Haug header to complete her hat trick and secure second place in Group A.
Switzerland vs New Zealand:
After losing against tournament debutants the Philippines, co-hosts New Zealand will look to qualify for the knockouts for the first time but in their path they will have to battle it out against first-placed Switzerland at Dunedin Stadium. New Zealand had many chances early on in the contest with shots from Rebekah Stott and C.J. Bott which were blocked in the 11th and 12th minute respectively. Chances from Katie Bowen, Malia Steinmetz and Annalie Longo followed on but Switzerland’s defence stayed strong and kept the scores level.
Jacqui Hand was so close to putting the Kiwis ahead in the 23rd minute, but her shot struck the post. Switzerland’s Seraina Piubel had an ambitious attempt at goal from distance towards the end of the first half, but Victoria Esson was there to make the save. Steinmetz had another shot at goal in the 74th minute but Switzerland goalkeeper Gaelle Thalmann responded with a comfortable save.
Late into extra time, Esson went forward for a set piece in order to find the winning goal for the Football Ferns. Unfortunately, her header was wide of the goal and it was heartbreak for New Zealand as the final whistle blew. With Norway winning their final game against the Philippines and finishing with a higher goal difference, therefore, New Zealand are officially knocked out of the Women’s World Cup.
Germany vs Colombia:
Both Germany and Colombia head into their second group match at Sydney Football Stadium looking for another win after strong displays in their first games. The contest between these two nations began as a back-and-forth affair, with possession distributed evenly within the first 15 minutes. Although, Colombia had more chances at goal within those 15 minutes with Mayra Ramirez’s header falling wide of the goal in the ninth minute.
In typical fashion, Germany held the majority of the possession as the first half went on and therefore chances at goal soon followed with Lina Magull and Lena Oberdorf having shots at goal but were well defended by Colombia. German captain Alexandra Popp had chances to put her side in the lead in the 42nd and 45th minute but her effort at goals could not find the back of the net.
In the 52nd minute, Colombia’s Manuela Vanegas’ initial shot was deflected and fell into the path of Linda Caicedo who sized up Germany’s Svenja Huth and Sara Daebritz to create space to get her shot off and slotted it into the top right corner giving the Colombians the lead.
Germany had chances to find the leveller after going down a goal through Popp and Oberdorf but their shots were off target. Caicedo was very close to scoring a brace in the 86th minute but a touch from substitute Sjoeke Nuesken prevented her to get the touch to score into an open net. Two minutes later, Colombia’s Catalina Perez took out Lena Oberdorf in the box and Germany were awarded a penalty. Alexandra Popp stepped up to take the spot kick in the 89th minute and struck it down the middle levelling the scores going into added time.
Despite the equaliser, Colombia had one final chance to win the game from a corner. Substitute Leicy Santos crossed the ball in where she was able to pick out Manuela Vanegas who headed it past Germany goalkeeper Merle Frohms in the seventh minute of added time to win the game for Colombia and put them a step closer to the Round of 16.