Women’s World Cup
Isn’t a nice day in Nice as Thailand suffered their second defeat and ended their journey in France, conceding another five goals from Sweden and tying the record of the most conceded goal in a group stage, 18 goals, after Argentina in 2007.
However, Thailand did not come to the Allianz Riviera to lose, as they showed from their attacking line-up. There are five changes from the first match including the return of first-choice goalkeeper Waraporn Boonsing and lethal striker Taneekarn Dangda. Meanwhile, Sweden benched two main strikers Sofia Jakobsson and Stina Blackstenius from the last match to bring Lena Hurtig and Anna Avengard to partner Fridolina Rolfo in 4-3-3 scheme.
Sweden took the lead in the 6th minutes through senior defender, Linda Sembrant, who got a header after receiving a beautiful cross from a set piece taken by Caroline Seger. Kosovare Asllani then doubled up the score after get a heading assist from Hurting before tricking Waraporn with a low shot to the near post at the 19th minutes. But the first half ended with Thailand down by three goals after Fridolina Rolfo scored a beautiful goal from outside of the box in the 42nd minutes. Unluckily for Thailand, Waraporn wasn’t able to keep the ball out despite getting a hand to it.
During the second half, Thailand looked much better defensively. Swedish coach Peter Gerhardsoon even used all the substitutions bringing on offensive players Madelen Janogy, Olivia Schough, and Mimi Larsson, but they couldn’t break Chabakaew newfound defensive solidity.
While the match became more intense in the last ten minutes. Lena Hurtig finally found the net with her header after converting a cross from Linda Sembrandt in the 81st minute.
However, tables would turn and the Chabakaew finally struck their first goal in France, scored by their living legend Kanjana Sung-Ngoen in injury time. After receiving a beautiful lobbed through pass from Taneekarn Dangda from the right side, she ran down the wing and finally conquered Chelsea’s goalkeeper Hedvig Lindahl to give the Thai fans something to celebrate. This was even a tearful moment for the bench as team manager Nuaphan Lamsam celebrated with head coach Nuengrutai Srathongvian. But Sweden then got another goal from the penalty spot after a handball by Natthakarn Chinwong was reviewed by VAR to make it 5-1 to Sweden.
United States Going Through The Knock-Out Stage.
Two hours later, USWNT joined Sweden to the knock-out phase after winning against Chile 3-0. Jill Ellis made 8 changes to her starting eleven but the Americans still a dangerous team as they kept the pressure on La Roja from the first whistle. Carli Lloyd opened the scoring after 10 minutes with a volley inside the box. That goal made her become the player who scored in six consecutive World Cup appearances.
USWNT then kicked into gear with their lead with two goals assisted by Tierna Davidson from the right flank. First on the 25th minutes that the Chicago Red Stars defender’s cross was converted by her clubmate Julie Ertz, while the other happened ten minutes later with Lloyd’s header. However, the Player of the Match award must go to PSG goalkeeper Tiane Endler, who managed to keep USA down to just three goals despite their nine shots on target.
Both USA and Sweden join the host France, Germany, Italy, England, Japan, Netherlands, and Canada, who have already locked the spot in the Big 16 Round. Meanwhile, there are four slots for the best third-placed teams, for which China and Australia remain in contention.