Along with the Japanese, the last world champions were eliminated from the tournament in Australia and New Zealand

Along with the Japanese, the last world champions were eliminated from the tournament in Australia and New Zealand

The Japanese national team, which had been very convincing so far, was surprisingly eliminated in the quarter-finals of the Women’s World Cup.

In a 1:2 (0:1) match against Sweden, Honoka Hayashi’s goal came too late (87th minute), after Riku Ueki hit the crossbar from a penalty kick (76th minute). Amanda Ellstedt (32) and Philippa Angeldahl (51/pen) scored for the overall better Swedes in front of 43,217 spectators in Auckland.

In the semi-finals next Tuesday, Peter Gerhardsson’s side will also face Spain in Auckland (10am CET). The Spanish team qualified for the semi-finals by defeating the Netherlands 2-1 (1-1, 0-0) after extra time. With the elimination of the Japanese team, the last team that was world champion at least once has been eliminated.

There are hardly any rooms for Japan

From the beginning, the Swedes gave the Japanese no room for their fearsome groups. While the 2011 world champion had few attacking ideas, Sweden’s attacks looked more powerful. Stina Blackstenius missed the first good chance after a long ball, and Ellstedt did better shortly before half-time. After a free kick, the defender took the lead from the crowd. Her fourth goal of the tournament was the first she scored with her foot. Kosovari Aslani wasted a 2-0 lead before the end of the first half, as her shot hit the inside post of Japan’s goal.

Ayaka Yamashita blocked another powerful shot from Reting Kannereid, but the ensuing corner resulted in a hand penalty for Sweden. Angeldal converted safely. On the other hand, Yuki, who was fouled, missed a brilliant penalty kick for Japan, which came back strongly in the final stage. Keiko Seki hit a free kick against the crossbar, and seconds later substitute Haisashi reduced the score to 1:2. But the equalizer no longer fell.

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