Two groups, only four teams get to advance for sure. As we entered the eighth day of competition in the 2015 Women’s World Cup in Canada, group’s A & B got to the deciding matchups. With it comes drama, intrigue and hopes and dreams either kept alive or dashed.
Which teams are busy celebrating advancement, which are sweating it out in third place and who went home? Let’s take a look at the final day of group action for both Group A and Group B at the 2015 Women’s World Cup.
1) Biggest Winner — Netherlands
A win would’ve been amazing, as the Netherlands would’ve guaranteed a spot in the round of 16 with it. However, getting a point and watching China and New Zealand tie was about as good as it could’ve gotten for the Dutch side.
Not only was the result good, but the Netherlands did it in about as dramatic fashion as possible. Canada led for a good 77 minutes of the match, only to see Van de Ven score an equalizer in the 87th minute.
With the combination of results, the Netherlands put themselves in a great position to be one of the four best third place teams and thus likely to advance to the round of 16.
2) Biggest Loser — Canada
Sure the hosts topped Group A, but this match ended in about as deflating a way as humanly possible. Rather than enjoying a comfortable and pretty attacking effort for an equally comfortable group win, Canada let off the gas late and the Netherlands equalized.
It meant the Canadian side spent the next few minutes scoreboard watching to make sure China didn’t get the win and steal the group lead.
Mission 1 was accomplished by winning the group, but overall this wasn’t the strongest of groups in the Women’s World Cup. Canada’s defense was once again a let down in a big way late and for all the attacking happening just one goal was a major let down.
Winning the group by scoring just two goals wasn’t exactly the way the hosts had this one drawn up either. Given the deflating final moments, Canada will be one interesting team to watch come the knockout stages.
3) Standout Performer — Lena Petermann, Germany
Scoring a brace against one of the weakest groups in Women’s World Cup history isn’t all that exciting. Doing it in two minutes of game time and after coming off the bench at the half…that is exciting.
Petermann has been a part of just two matches in this Women’s World Cup so far, and the 21-year-old forward scored her first and second international goals of her career in amazing fashion. The 4-0 scoreline doesn’t really tell the story, as Germany were put under some decent pressure by a Thailand side with nothing to lose in the matchup.
Instead, Petermann took a 1-0 match at the half and opened it up a 3-0 blowout in the making. Congrats on the best performance of a dramatic day.
4) Results of the Day:
Ivory Coast 1 (Ange 71′) Norway 3 (Hegerberg 6′, 62′; Gulbrandsen 67′)
Thailand 0 Germany 4 (Leupolz 24′; Peterman 56′, 58′; Dabritz 73′)
China 2 (Wang L S 41′ PEN; Wang SH SH 60′) New Zealand 2 (Stott 28′; Wilkinson 64′)
Netherlands 1 (Van de Ven 87′) Canada 1 (Lawrence 10′)
5) Tweet/Social Media of the Day —
Well played, #CAN fans pic.twitter.com/lZDekn2qyr
— Major League Soccer (@MLS) June 15, 2015
Get it…oh, the irony of it all though, as Canada failed to bring that ‘A’ game & really felt more like the “Eh, what the hell just happened” game.
6) Goal of the Day — Melanie Leupolz, Germany (check it out at the 35 second mark)
7) Best Moment — Amy Lawrence’s dance
Celebrating goals in unique fashion is nothing new to the world of soccer. Heck, its something even young kids playing rec soccer in the United States coordinate these days. Still, when you score your first career international goal in a potential group deciding game, dancing may be the last thing on your mind.
For Canada’s 20-year-old Ashley Lawrence it was the only thing on her mind. Nothing like pure joy in sports, period.