It felt like this England group had been knocked from pillar to put up throughout this World Cup. Injuries, suspensions, fights off the sphere. When Colombia took the lead in Saturday’s quarter-final towards the percentages, the lionesses resembled a boxer being counted out within the ring. Could they stand up and transfer on once more?
Two gamers who’ve been underneath extra stress than most had been those who gave a powerful sure. Lauren Hemp and Alessia Russo carried this group’s goal-scoring burden – and targets had been laborious to return by for a lot of this match.
But the 2 forwards confirmed guts, dedication and composure to energy England by means of to a World Cup semi-final towards hosts Australia.
Hemp particularly was battered and bruised by full-time, the attacker was handled roughly by Colobmia’s bodily protection.
The Lionesses anticipated a combat they usually received it. Their final 16 matches with Nigeria had given them a style of enjoying in entrance of a hostile crowd, however yesterday’s hostile ambiance was on one other degree.
England is thru to the semi-finals of the Women’s World Cup after beating Colombia in Sydney
Alessia Russo (backside centre) scored the successful purpose for England to progress to the World Cup semi-finals
The Colombia gamers had been in tears full-time and had been comforted by England gamers after the sport
Australia is residence to just about 30,000 Colombian college students who’ve performed matches throughout this World Cup. Thousands extra followers had traveled from South America. When England walked out for kick-off, they stepped right into a Colombian cauldron of fireside and fury. Supporters viciously roared their nationwide anthem.
A whistle sounded each time an England participant touched the ball. Each go was met with fierce cries of “Colombia, Colombia.” They celebrated a throw-in within the attacking half as if they’d scored a purpose.
England might have silenced the group within the sixth minute when a free ball within the penalty space fell first to Hemp after which to Russo, however neither might discover the again of the web. Russo’s shot compelled Colombia into an early substitution – with defender Carolina Arias unable to proceed after blocking the try along with her head.
England had recognized Colombia could be bodily. In the twentieth minute, Hemp was on the receiving finish of a shoulder to the face as she tried to go Ana Maria Guzman. It was a deal with that wouldn’t have been misplaced in a rugby sport, however no free kick was awarded.
Rachel Daly was Guzman’s subsequent sufferer, the right-back practically pinching her opponent’s face as she pushed her off the ball. Again no free kick was awarded. So that’s how it might be?
England performed the very best of the entire match, so when Colombia took the lead within the forty fourth minute, it felt like a silly blow.
Daly allowed Leicy Santos to enter the field and her floating throw sailed over Mary Earps’ head and into the again of the web. The noise from the Colombian supporters was deafening. England needed to decide: freeze underneath the stress or arise and combat. They selected the latter.
Their equalizing purpose got here within the sixth minute of stoppage time of the primary half when Keira Walsh’s cross was headed within the field by Lucy Bronze to Russo. The striker was solely in a position to deflect the ball away from Daniela Arias and into the trail of Perez.
England have now hosted a World Cup semi-final match towards match hosts Australia
Colombia initially took the lead by means of the primary strike by Leicy Santos (left) within the first half
Colombian gamers emphatically celebrated after going by means of, however their pleasure was short-lived
It ought to have been an uncomplicated assortment for the Colombian goalkeeper, however as she slid out the ball spiraled out of her fingers and behind her in direction of the purpose. Russo was blocked, however Hemp pushed by means of our bodies to poke the ball residence. The Bank of England exploded.
It was a present, however they didn’t care. After the whole lot Sarina Wiegman’s group has been by means of on this match, possibly they lastly had some luck to thank.
The Lionesses had the momentum because the second half started. Daly noticed a header saved by Perez, after which the goalkeeper grabbed a free kick shortly afterwards. Then got here the second Russo had been ready for. Stanway discovered area exterior the field and performed a go to the ahead Arias.
Lauren Hemp (proper) leveled England after scoring on the stroke of half time
Hemp was elated after the match as her purpose helped England cross the road towards Colombia
Russo spun previous the defender after which fired a wonderful blow into the underside left nook. For a striker who was criticized for not scoring sufficient on this match, it was a managed and scientific end.
Russo scored 4 targets in European Championships, however all of them had been in video games the place England had been already main. This, to win 1 / 4 last tie, is arguably a very powerful purpose she has scored in her worldwide profession.
Colombia’s gamers would by no means give up simply. A protracted-range effort from Lorena Bedoya nearly shocked Earps, however the England goalkeeper did effectively, tapping the ball over the crossbar.
England coach Sarina Wiegman shall be involved in regards to the variety of probabilities Colombia created towards England
Colombia continued to advance, however time and again their assaults had been repelled by Millie Bright, Jess Carter and Alex Greenwood.
There was one last roar from the Colombian followers as eight minutes of additional time was added, however England held on.
It might have been tight, however most knockout matches at this World Cup had been. This was an enormous step up from a lackluster efficiency towards Nigeria, however England might want to shift gears once more once they face Australia within the semi-finals on Wednesday.
The Wiegman gamers have three days to patch themselves up from yesterday’s bloody encounter and go once more. Like all greatest fighters, this England group doesn’t know once they’re overwhelmed.