Photo Credit: Alex Pantling – FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images
The FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023™ is set for an exciting climax in Australia this weekend, with the co-hosts enjoying one last opportunity to perform in front of their home crowd in the Play-off for 3rd place, before England and Spain meet in the final on Sunday.
Having been left heartbroken after their 3-1 semi-final defeat to the English, Australia will look to cement third place and cap-off a memorable campaign when they face-off against Sweden in Brisbane on Saturday evening.
24 hours later, England and Spain will meet in front of a packed Stadium Australia – both sides vying for their maiden FIFA Women’s World Cup™ title.
Despite not being in the final on Sunday, Australia’s star striker Sam Kerr insisted there was still much to look forward to ahead of their clash with Sweden.
“I think we’re excited. I think, of course there was the disappointment of the other night but I think now the focus has turned to the game and we’re very proud to be here, fighting for the bronze medal.
“It’s the first time any Australian team will do so at a World Cup, so yeah, we’re looking forward to it,” Kerr said.
Their opponents for 3rd place Sweden, narrowly lost out to Spain in a dramatic finish in their semi-final in Auckland.
Head Coach Peter Gerhardsson has been here before of course, having led Sweden to third place at the 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup™.
“It’s very tense, very focused. My experience from 2019 and the joy we experienced, I myself remember what I felt after that match – we spent two days trying to recharge!” Gerhardsson remarked.
“Our players and myself included, want to experience that feeling again, so there’s no lack of motivation,” he continued.
Stadium Australia will be the focus on Sunday evening as all eyes will be on Spain and England in the FIFA Women’s World Cup™ Final.
For both sides this will be their first ever Women’s World Cup Final, with a new champion guaranteed come the final whistle in Sydney.
England will be slight favourites heading into the final and looked impressive in their semi-final victory over Australia. Despite being pegged back to 1-1 by an outstanding Sam Kerr goal, Sarina Wiegman’s team rallied well, scoring twice in the final 20 minutes to seal their place against Spain.
Spain have certainly exceeded expectations in this World Cup and have recovered well having being beaten 4-0 in the group stage by Japan in Wellington. Jorge Vilda’s side clinching their place in the final after an incredible climax to their semi-final in Auckland. Olga Carmona’s strike from the edge of the box finally seeing off Sweden 2-1.
In what has been one of the most memorable and competitive FIFA Women’s World Cups™ ever, the anticipation and excitement is reaching fever pitch as the final matches come into view.
FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023™
Play-off for 3rd Place
Sweden v Australia
Spain v England