Japan women’s soccer tears up as title dreams fall short in Sweden

Japan Women’s Football, who looked set to repeat their 2011 Women’s World Cup triumph in Germany with a clean sweep of their three Group C matches and a four-game winning streak (14 goals scored and one conceded)토토사이트 culminating in a 3-1 victory over Norway in the Round of 16, have been stymied by Sweden.

The Sweden women’s national team, led by Peter Gerhardtsson, defeated Japan 2-1 in the quarter-finals of the FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023 at Eden Park in Auckland, New Zealand, at 4:30 p.m. ET on Wednesday to advance to the last four and meet Spain.

Japan hit the crossbar until PK

It was clear from the game that Sweden’s penalty shootout victory over the United States, arguably the best team in women’s football, in the Round of 16 was no fluke. The concentration they showed at every crucial juncture was too much for the Japanese to handle. Sweden’s first goal at 31:07 of the first half was emblematic of this.

A free-kick ball from captain Kosovare Aslani caused chaos in front of the Japanese goal. Natalie Bjorn’s shot didn’t go in, but after several more second-ball opportunities, the Swedes were one step ahead. A ball from Magdalena Eriksson bounced off Japanese defender Saki Kumagai and Amanda Ilesstedt took advantage of the moment to slam home a right-footed volley.

With a valuable point in the bag, Sweden added a further goal from the penalty spot early in the second half to seal their place in the top four. This time, they capitalised on a set-piece opportunity. In the 48th minute, a handball foul on Fika Nagano could not escape the VAR camera as Sweden won a corner on the right. Midfielder Philippa Angeldahl’s right-footed penalty kick went low and into the left corner at 50:16.

Not to be outdone, Japan were awarded a penalty in the 74th minute for a foul on Swedish substitute Madeleine Janowi, but Riko Ueki’s hard right-footed strike hit the crossbar. Japan’s crossbar misfortune continued in the 86th minute. Fujino Aoba’s direct free kick with his right foot hit the crossbar and was then denied by a super save from Swedish goalkeeper Jessara Musovic.

Japan refused to give up and Hayashi Honoka scored the equaliser with her right foot in the 86th minute, but they had to swallow hard until the 11 minutes of second-half stoppage time were up.

Sweden will now meet Spain for a place in the final at 5pm local time on Liberation Day at the same venue. Spain were thrashed 0-4 by Japan in the group stage, but bounced back with a 5-1 win over Switzerland in the round of 16 and a 2-1 victory over one of the favourites, the Netherlands, in the quarter-finals.

FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023 quarter-final results (11 August, 4.30pm, Eden Park – Auckland)

Sweden 2-1 Japan [Goals: Amanda Ilesstedt (31 mins 7 secs), Philippa Angeldahl (50 mins 16 secs, PK) / Hayashi Honoka (86 mins 52 secs)]

◇ FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023 remaining schedule
Saturday, 12 August, 4:00 p.m. ☆ Australia – France (Quarterfinals)
Saturday, 12 August, 7:30 p.m. ☆ England – Colombia (Quarterfinals)
Tuesday 15 August, 5pm ☆ Sweden – Spain (Quarter-finals)
Wednesday 16 August, 7pm ☆ {Australia – France Winner} vs {England – Colombia Winner}
Saturday 19 August, 5pm ☆ Third place match
Sunday 20 August, 7.30pm ☆ Final match

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *