Football

Women’s World Cup: USA keeps slate clean, advances

Opportunistic: Lindsey Horan, right, opens the scoring for the US.

Opportunistic: Lindsey Horan, right, opens the scoring for the US.   | Photo Credit: BERNADETT SZABO

Heartbreak for Chile as spot-kick goes abegging

The United States made it three wins out of three at the Women’s World Cup on Thursday by beating Sweden 2-0 to top Group F, while Chile had to cede a last-16 spot to Nigeria.

The Americans will continue their bid to defend their World title against Spain in Reims on Monday after a win that saw them make it 18 goals for the tournament and break the 24-year-old record for the number of goals scored in the group stage held by Norway.

VAR relief

Lindsey Horan opened the scoring when she tapped home Samantha Mewis’ flick in the third minute, and Tobin Heath helped make sure of the points by firing past Hedvig Lindahl via a big deflection off Jonna Andersson four minutes after the break.

Andersson’s own goal somehow survived a VAR check from referee Anastasia Pustovoytova despite substitute Carli Lloyd looking to be offside in the build-up.

Sweden started with a team with seven changes from the side that beat Thailand 5-1 last time out and four players making their World Cup debut.

However, the defeat means Sweden will face Canada next in Paris on Monday and is in an easier side of the knockout draw from the States, who have hosts France, England and Norway as potential opponents further down the line.

There was heartbreak for Chile, meanwhile, which needed to beat Thailand by three goals in order to pip Nigeria into the knockouts.

Chile was 2-0 up with five minutes left when it was awarded a penalty via VAR, only for Francisca Lara to crash her spot-kick off the bar and see her side knocked out.

Lionesses roar

Earlier, just 10 seconds of the allotted five minutes of added time remained in Montpellier when Ajara Nchout curled Cameroon into the next round as one of the best third-placed teams with a superb strike to beat New Zealand 2-1 in Group E.

The results:

Group F: Sweden 0 lost to USA 2 (Horan 3, Andersson 50-og); Thailand 0 lost to Chile 2 (Boonsing 48-og, Urrutia 80).

Group E: Cameroon 2 (Nchout 57, 90+5) bt New Zealand 1 (Awona 80-og); Netherlands 2 (Dekker 54, Beerensteyn 75) bt Canada 1 (Sinclair 60).

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Printable version | Feb 22, 2020 2:46:31 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/sport/football/womens-world-cup-usa-keeps-slate-clean-advances/article28102487.ece

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