England 3-1 Australia
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England Reach First World Cup Final Since 1966 By Defeating Australia
The England women’s national team reached the Women’s World Cup final for the first time ever after defeating co-hosts Australia 3-1 in the semi-finals on Thursday. The Lionesses will now face Spain in the final on Sunday as they look to lift their first ever World Cup trophy.
In front of a sell-out and raucous home crowd at Sydney’s Stadium Australia, England spoiled the party and showed their class by beating the Matildas. This caps off a tremendous two years for England under manager Sarina Wiegman, having won the European Championships on home soil last summer.
The first half was tightly contested, but England took the lead through a superb Ella Toone strike from the edge of the box which flew into the top corner. Going into halftime up 1-0, England controlled proceedings and limited Australia’s threatening counterattacks.
In the second half, the Matildas threw everything forward in search of an equalizer. Their persistence paid off when star striker Sam Kerr unleashed a thunderous long-range shot that looped over England keeper Mary Earps.
With the score at 1-1, a tense match remained in the balance. But England’s quality shone through when Lauren Hemp pounced on an Australian defensive mistake to put the Lionesses back in front. Any hopes of an Australian comeback were dashed late on when Alessia Russo added a third for England.
While disappointed not to reach the final, Australia made a lasting impression in front of adoring home fans. The Matildas showed how far the women’s game has come in Australia throughout an unforgettable World Cup run.
As for England, they once again demonstrated their elite pedigree in global tournaments. By silencing the home crowd and a nation swept up in “Matildas Mania”, the ruthless Lionesses now stand one win away from their first ever World Cup title.