Four teams have produced champions in the last eight Women’s World Cups. USA (1991, 1999, 2015, 2019), Germany (2003, 2007), Norway (1995), Japan (2011). However, there are no them in the semifinals of the 2023 Women’s World Cup in Australia and New Zealand, the ninth competition. Germany packed up early after being caught by Korea in the group stage, and the United States and Norway were knocked out in the round of 16. Then, as even Japan collapsed in the quarterfinals, only four teams survived in the stronghold. England, Australia, Spain and Sweden. Whoever wins now writes the history of the first championship.
The team that looks closest to the throne is ‘European Champions’ England. In the quarterfinals held on the 12th (Korean time), England won a 2-1 come-from-behind victory over Columbia, the sensational team of this tournament, to advance to the semifinals in three consecutive World Cup tournaments. They lost only once in 37 matches until the match against Colombia after Sarina Wigman was installed as the head coach two years ago. This includes the 2022 Women’s European Football Championship, which was won last year. The odds of England winning, estimated by soccer data company Opta, are 31.59%. highest among the four teams.
England’s World Cup journey has been far from smooth sailing. In the round of 16, after being hit by 20 shots by ambush Nigerian and enduring without a goal, the match had to be decided in a penalty shootout (4-2). England had an ‘underdog fight’, losing 9-15 shots to Colombia, and was happy to wallow in the mud. The British ‘Guardian’ said, “This is not a champion’s play, but a champion’s way to win. England persevered and overcame what Germany, Japan and the United States lacked.”
The same goes for Australia, the host nation, the opponent of the semifinals, who has overcome the turmoil. After a 0-0 draw in the quarterfinals held on the same day, Australia defeated France after a bloody penalty shoot-out (7-6) involving 20 kickers from both teams. Australia’s goalkeeper Mackenzie Arnold (West Ham) missed the opportunity to put an end to the victory by missing the fifth kicker, but made three saves and led the team to the semifinals. Australian coach Tony Gustafsson said, “It is unprecedented to continue the game and win after missing a penalty. Great mental strength,” he praised.
Australia has advanced to the quarterfinals of the Women’s World Cup six times before, but has never crossed the threshold of the semifinals. The ‘8th round jinx’ that I was sick of was defeated, and I look forward to winning. Fixer Sam Kerr (Chelsea), who took a break from a calf injury, completed his warm-up by substituting in two consecutive matches of the tournament. Dae Jin-woon can’t just be seen as bad. Australia is the only team to have beaten Wigman’s England in the past two years (a 2-0 win in a friendly last April). Expectations are also raised that England’s ace striker Lauren James (Chelsea) will miss the round of 16 due to suspension.토토사이트
On the other side, Spain and Sweden face each other. Over the past year, Spain has overcome difficulties such as a discord between current manager Jorge Vilda and the players and a crushing loss against Japan (0-4) to achieve the first semifinal advance in history. There are many soccer masters who have occupied the top of various records such as passing, expected goals, and creating chances. On the other hand, Sweden is good at one-on-one competition and organized pressure using its physique advantage. Spain returned home from the quarterfinals against Japan, which had been struggling. The best performance was the runner-up in the 2003 competition, crossing 20 years and looking at the top again.