Do you know what Australian Women did? Somehow, Australia and Brazil came together at a fourth FIFA Women’s World Cup in a row in France 2019. Australia entered the tournament at a high point, while Brazil suffered an unthinkable series of nine defeats. However, it was the Matildas that opened with an unexpected 1-2 loss to Italy, while As Canarinhas scored a boastful 3-0 win over Jamaica.
What Australian Women Did?
Then there were the superstars. The great Marta of all time had missed Brazil’s opening game, but could she resist injury to take the field, or would top scorer Sam Kerr move into the spotlight a few days earlier after scoring her first World Cup goal for women?
Another defeat for Australia would jeopardize her much-vaunted campaign. For Brazil, it was also about to avenge an exit from the round of 16 by the Aussies in Canada four years earlier. However, Brazil had beaten their rivals on home soil on penalties to reach the medal round at the Rio 2016 Olympics. The Matildas followed with a four-game winning streak against Brazil, a run that resulted in the unlikely number 14 in the Brazilian goal-to-column.
The side plots were numerous and the stakes were high. But would the competition deliver? It has certainly proven itself and immediately became a classic in the group stage of the Women’s World Cup.
Brazil shot in an 11-minute volley with two goals, which came from Marta’s shoe and Cristiane’s head – the latter had already beaten Australia in 2007 in China. Suddenly the Aussies stared at the abyss. Only once had a team won after scoring two goals less in a women’s World Cup game.
Then the tide began to turn as Australian Women pulled a goal back just before the break. Marta got out at half-time, as did the cool leadership hand of the timeless Formiga. In the middle of the second half, the Matildas were somehow back in front. Despite countless other actions in both penalty areas, a breathless end-to-end competition in favor of green and gold ended in five due to the odd goal.
Players of Both Teams
Both teams were littered with big names, most of which were in a row four years earlier when the two met in Canada in 2015. But it was one of the few who weren’t who ultimately became players in the game.
Chloe Logarzo’s journey could hardly have stood out from most of the players on the pitch, many of whom had a decade or more international experience. Logarzo watched the Matildas breakthrough Brazil from a bar in Greece. At that time, Logarzo was traveling in Europe.
Four years later, she scored the equalizer and helped her play a crucial role in a crucial victory.
“I never thought we would lose this game,” Logarzo told FIFA.com, giving an insight into her indomitable character.
“I think it’s the Australian spirit, and (coach) Ante (Milicic) came (at half time) and said exactly the same thing. When we have our backs to the wall, we come out swinging. The number of emotions that came on this field was incredible. “
Midfielder Logarzo is a coach’s dream. A modest build hides a massive heart. Despite her metronomic movement in the middle of the park and beyond, Logarzo hardly seems to be sweating.
“When I watched the girls (in Canada 2015), I almost cried. I can’t even describe (score), a dream came true. It was special to do this in front of my friends and family.”
Australia 3 (Caitlin Foord 45+1’, Chloe Logarzo 58’, Monica O.G. 66’)
Brazil 2 (Marta 27’ pen, Cristiane 38’)
Stade de la Mosson, Montpellier