Women’s World Cup 2023 – It’s Quarter Finals time
Written By: Natasha Turkington
Natasha Turkington was born and bred in Manchester, and is considered one of soccer’s most prolific and knowledgeable fans. Follow her on Twitter at @natashaturk.
It has been a fantastic tournament so far with surprises everywhere, where the final group-stage action served up a shock Germany exit as Morocco became the third African nation to reach the knockout stages.
However, the biggest shock had to be World Cup holders, USA getting dramatically knocked out after a tense penalty shootout loss to Sweden.
Both sides failed to find the back of the net in 90 minutes, and after 30 minutes of extra time the score was still goalless.
It was the USWNT who consistently looked most likely to score, but a solid defensive display from Sweden saw the world champions forced into the first extra time and penalty shootout of the tournament.
Ultimately Megan Rapinoe and Julie Ertz came up short, which was a sad end to Rapinoe’s national team career.
Japan’s Women’s Soccer team have been somewhat the tournament dark horses with dominant performances throughout the group stage topping it off by trouncing Norway 3-1.
On a mission to bury the memory of their disappointing exit at the last-16 stage in 2019 and with a current goal tally of 11 so far, Japan comfortably move on to the last 16
Five days after being totally out-coached 4-0 by Japan, Spain silenced their doubters with an equally comprehensive 5-1 win over Switzerland to secure their place in the quarterfinals.
England’s Women’s Team survived a major scare to defeat Nigeria on penalties after having to play with 10 players in extra time following Lauren James’ violent conduct red card. Manager Sarina Wiegman must now wait to discover the extent of her star forward’s suspension, which is set to be decided by a disciplinary panel.
With questions marks hanging over England performances so far, it will be fascinating to see if they can quash the negativity with a convincing quarterfinal win over Columbia this weekend.
France and Morocco will decide their fate with a place against top-of-the-group Australia up for grabs after the co-hosts comfortably defeated Denmark on Monday.
Australia had only ever reached the last eight at the World Cup once before, in 2015, losing their four other knockout matches across the years.
Let’s take a look at the upcoming Quarter Finals fixtures –
Friday 11 August
QF1: Spain vs Netherlands (02:00, Wellington)
QF2: Japan vs Sweden (08:30, Auckland)
Saturday 12 August
QF3: Australia vs (France / Morocco) (08:00, Brisbane)
QF4: England vs (Colombia / Jamaica) (11:30, Sydney)
With favorites USA out of the picture and loses by Spain and Germany, we have some juicy Women’s World Cup betting odds for you!