Nobody beats Sweden after losing in the semi-finals of the FIFA Women’s World Cup, not even the host country.
The Swedes held on to their perfect four-game record for third place at the Women’s Worlds with goals from Fridolina Rolfo and Kosovare Asllani on Saturday. They defeated Australia 2-0.
” It’s really super ! We showed from the first minute that we were the best team, said Rolfo. We deserve this medal. »
It’s a disappointing end to the game for the Matildas, who grabbed attention at home with their first step to the semi-finals.
The tournament in Australia and New Zealand set a box office record and two of the Aussies’ matches became the most-watched shows on local television in 20 years.
The Sydney Opera House was lit up in green and gold and thousands of fans gathered in cities across the country hoping to see the Matildas on giant screens win a medal.
Unfortunately, the adventure ended with losses against the teams ranked third and fourth in the world, even with star forward Sam Kerr back in the starting lineup.
“We wanted to win, we wanted to take something home. That’s how it is, Kerr said. But looking at the fan support and how the girls performed, I think we’ve proven to the world that we’re a country that loves soccer.
“We didn’t reach our goal tonight, but hopefully we’ve inspired a new generation. »
England and Spain meet in the final on Sunday in Sydney.
Sweden dominated the match for bronze, staying compact and exploiting openings in the Australian defence.
Rolfo took advantage of a penalty to open the scoring in the 30th minute of play. Asllani widened the gap with a long strike on the counterattack in the 62nd minute.
Goalkeeper Zecira Musovic took care of the rest, blocking a dangerous Kerr shot in first-half stoppage time, then frustrating Clare Polkinghorne in the 70th minute.
Sweden, runners-up in the 2003 tournament, also beat Germany in 1991, France in 2011 and England in 2019 in bronze medal matches. She also won silver at the Tokyo Olympics in 2021 and at the Rio Games in 2016.