The Football Ferns were not at their best against Canada in their second match at the Fifa Women's World Cup, but even their best results may not have been enough to prevent them from defeating. left them with a narrow lane towards the round of 16.
After all, it was not enough four days earlier, when they conceded the blocking of the match against the Netherlands – a match that showed how good they had to be in producing close matches with the teams. world's elite, not to mention defeating them. .
The victories against the top nations also represent a bit of luck, and although the Ferns had a lot of them when they beat England in a friendly match two weeks ago, they lost a precious nothing in France, where they have now lost two defenders. to injury – Meikayla Moore with a broken achilles and CJ Bott with a broken wrist.
Bott had his misfortune 15 minutes into the match, Sunday [NZ time]which meant that Ria Percival had to go from the midfield – where she had played a key role in the Netherlands – back, and from there, the traffic was one-way, even if it took Canada up to # 39, at the beginning of the second half go ahead.
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The Ferns could not get close to their opponents and were unable to disrupt them – as coach Tom Sermanni later acknowledged – and central defenders Abby Erceg and Rebekah Stott were the best performers for the second consecutive game . Canada's superior technical abilities and wealth of possession meant a 2-0 win.
"We talked about doing everything we could do and tonight we did not do it," Sermanni said afterwards.
"When it happens to us, playing against Canadian teams, we simply can not compete.
"The important thing is to regroup, refocus, put everyone in good health and move on to the next game.We are a team that will win and lose at times, so we need to get back on foot."
With a match to be played in Group E against Cameroon, No. 46 World, the Ferns are still looking for a place in the round of 16 among the top four teams in third place, but will need to be in the top spot. a first World Cup win against the African nation to finish with three points, and other results go their way.
Cameroon also had two defeats in France – 1-0 against Canada in their first match, 3-1 against the Netherlands earlier on Sunday – so they are in the same position as the Ferns, who lost to the the only time they've met before, at the London 2012 Olympics.
By the time the game starts at 4 am local time, four of the other groups will have been designated, which means that the Ferns and Cameroon will know if they still have a chance and they just have need to win. win by a certain margin.
The biggest boost they could get would be for Argentina and Scotland to shoot Thursday, which would leave the South Americans third in Group D with two points and could miss out.
The team ranked third in group F is the other team that the Fougères – or Cameroon – hope to advance, the goal difference of Thailand being ruined by their 13-0 loss against the United States, and Chile is likely to be once face to face. Americans Monday.
In groups A, B and C, the teams ranked third have already three points in their name – Nigeria, with a goal difference of -1, China, 0, and Australia, also 0 – at the head of the last lap. .
The Fougères and Cameroon both have a goal difference of -3 at the end of their first two games and may have to win two or more goals to advance, which would be a fascinating match.
Fifa Women's World Cup – how are you
Group A: France 6 (+5 goal difference), Norway 3 (+2), Nigeria 3 (-1), South Korea 0 (-6)
Group B: Germany 6 (+2), Spain 3 (+1), China 3 (0), South Africa 0 (-3)
Group C: Italy 6 (+6), Brazil 3 (+2), Australia 3 (0), Jamaica 0 (-8)
Group D: England 6 (+2), Japan 4 (+1), Argentina 1 (-1), Scotland 0 (-2)
Group E: Netherlands 6 (+3), Canada 6 (+3), Cameroon 0 (-3), Football ferns 0 (-3)
Group F *: United States 3 (+13), Sweden 3 (+2), Chile 0 (-2), Thailand 0 (-13)
* The second round of matches takes place on Monday [NZ time].
The top two teams in each group qualify for the round of 16 as well as the top four teams in third place.