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  • Writer's pictureAshlea Follows

WWC 2023 Day 8: Round-up

We saw some interesting results on day 8 of this incredible Women’s World Cup

tournament. Co hosts Australia were beaten by Nigeria, USA could only manage a draw

with Netherlands and Portugal secured a convincing win over Vietnam. USA vs Netherlands

After both teams got their tournament off to a winning start in Group E, this fixture promised to be an exciting encounter between the two World Cup finalists from 2019. But it ended in a 1-1 draw.

Jill Roord scored for Holland and Lindsey Horan scored for the US.

The Netherlands side proved to be quite a challenge for the US in the early stages, they pressed the US players high up the pitch and were soon rewarded thanks to new Manchester City signing Jill Roord. Victoria Pelova cut the ball back to Roord on the edge of the area and her low driven

effort flew past Alyssa Naeher in the US goal. After the goal the Dutch looked in control but the US started to create a few chances of their own

but they were just lacking that final end product (which is unlike them). In the second half the

Americans looked a lot stronger and more determined to score. This direct approach paid off just moments into the half as Lindsey Horan headed home her second goal of this tournament after a perfect ball into the box from Rose Lavelle.

Both teams pushed for a winner and at times it certainly looked like the Netherlands were holding on, but a draw was how it finished. Both teams sit together at the top of the group with 4 points and their fate is in their own hands ahead of their final group games on Tuesday.

Portugal vs Vietnam

Portugal claimed their first ever World Cup victory and kept their hopes of reaching the round of 16 alive as they beat Vietnam 2-0.

The Portuguese players came firing out the blocks, they scored after just seven minutes through Telma Encarnacao. The 21-year-old forward guided the ball past the Vietnamese keeper after a brilliant ball in from Lucia Alves.

In the 21st minute it was 2-0, Kika Nazareth calmly slotted the ball past Tran Thi Kim Thanh after getting on the end of an inch perfect ball from Encarnacao.

The Portuguese continued to dominate the game for the rest of the first half and all through the second, and if it wasn't for the Vietnamese keeper the scoreline could have been a lot worse. Despite not getting on the scoresheet herself or grabbing an assist, the Portuguese's star player was Jessica Silva, everything good that happened came through or started with her.

In order to make it through to the round of 16 stage, Portugal must overcome current World

Champions USA, it’s a tough task for the tournament debutants but can they do it?

Australia vs Nigeria

Fresh off the back of an opening day victory over the Republic of Ireland, Australia looked to make it 2 wins from 2 at this year's tournament. However, a side ranked 30 places below them in the world rankings, Nigeria pulled off a shocking comeback and beat The Matildas 3-2.

Australia did start the game the better of the two teams, they had chances to score through Steph Catley and Hayley Raso but they just couldn’t find the back of the net. So they were surely in dreamland when Emily Van Egmond scored off Caitlin Foord’s pass in the first minute of additional time at the end of the half.

However, The Matildas celebrations were cut short as after going 40 minutes without even

registering a shot on target the Nigerians were level, Uchenna Kanu struck the ball calmly past Mackenzie Arnold in the final kick of the first half.

After the break, it was Nigeria who looked more threatening and just after the hour mark they got their reward. Following poor positioning from Arnold in the Australia goal, Osinachi Ohale easily headed her side into a 2-1 lead.

Asisat Oshoala came on as a substitute for Nigeria and she began to have more and more of an influence in the game. She soon made it 3-1 after an Alanna Kennedy mistake, she latched onto the ball, took it round Arnold and calmly stroked the ball into the back of the net.

Alanna Kennedy made up for her defensive mistake by scoring late on, but it wasn’t enough and Nigeria held on for a vital 3 points to send them top of Group B. Australia still have a chance of qualifying for the round of 16, but they almost certainly need a victory against Olympic Champions Canada on Monday.

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