England topples host Australia to reach World Cup final

Women's World Cup: Australia, England advance to semis

Jul 22, 2023; Auckland, NZL; A general view of the pitch before a group stage match between the USA and Vietnam in the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup at Eden Park.
Image: Jenna Watson-USA TODAY Sports

England outclassed host Australia 3-1 on Wednesday to advance to the Women’s World Cup Final for the first time.

Ella Toone, Lauren Hemp and Alessia Russo scored for England in the semifinal in Sydney, Australia.

England will return to the pitch at Stadium Australia to face fellow first-time finalist Spain in Sunday’s championship match.

After Toone put England on the board with a shot into the top-right corner in the 36th minute, Matildas star Sam Kerr leveled the score on a stunning 25-yard strike in the 63rd minute.

The euphoria among the crowd of 75,784 was short-lived, as Hemp found the net eight minutes later and Russo delivered the dagger in the 86th minute.

England had fallen in the semifinals in each of the two previous World Cups.

“This is the one thing I’ve always wanted, to make finals at a World Cup, and after two times of getting huge disappointment, honestly I can’t believe it,” England defender Lucy Bronze said. “We all dreamed of being in the final and all our family and friends who booked to stay here until the final because they all believed in us.

“At the same time, it’s been amazing to play against Australia in Australia. What a fantastic tournament they had as well.”

England finished with a 15-12 edge in shots, including a 5-4 lead in shots on goal. Mary Earps made three saves for England and Mackenzie Arnold had two for the Aussies.

“Spain is going to be even tougher. Every single game that we’ve come into this tournament has been of the highest level, so we have to be ready, but we’ve been dreaming since we were little girls, so we’re excited,” England’s Russo said.

—Field Level Media

Original source here

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Anthony Barnett
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