World Cups and Olympic Games; it’s never quite happened for Australia at major tournaments despite the ability of the team representing the AFC nation.
Hotly tipped by many as the dark horses this summer, helped in large part to the outstanding, ever expanding goal tally of captain Sam Kerr, could this be the year the Matildas finally bring home the bacon?
Steadily progressing through their four-year gap including a nervous Asian Cup final against Japan, things seemed to be going well enough for the team until Alen Stajcic was fired at the start of the year with question marks still surrounding the dismissal.
With less than half a year with the squad, new coach Ante Milicic will have his work cut out for him this summer, the dark horse moniker only adding pressure to the group.
With a formidable midfield made up of the like of Katrina Gorry, Elise Kellond-Knight and Emily van Egmond as well as Portland pair Caitlin Foord and Hayley Raso beefing up the attack, it’s hard to ignore the Golden Generation.
Goalkeepers: Lydia Williams (Reign FC), Teagan Micah (UCLA Bruins), Mackenzie Arnold (Brisbane Roar).
Defenders: Gema Simon (Newcastle Jets), Clare Polkinghorne (Houston Dash), Laura Alleway (Melbourne Victory), Steph Catley (Reign FC), Alanna Kennedy (Orlando Pride), Ellie Carpenter (Portland Thorns), Teigen Allen (Melbourne Victory).
Midfielders: Aivi Luik (Levante), Chloe Logarzo (Washington Spirit), Elise Kellond-Knight (Reign FC), Emily van Egmond (Orlando Pride), Tameka Yallop (Klepp), Katrina Gorry (Brisbane Roar), Amy Harrison (Washington Spirit).
Attackers: Caitlin Foord (Portland Thorns), Lisa De Vanna (Sydney FC), Emily Gielnik (Melbourne Victory), Hayley Raso (Portland Thorns), Mary Fowler (Bankstown City), Sam Kerr (Chicago Red Stars).
The general consensus is that this Australia team will go far this summer, but they’re too much like France to do that. The ability is there but the history and lack of tournament luck seems to speak louder than personnel, the Matildas shouldn’t fail to get out of the group, but it’s highly unlikely they’ll be seen in the final.
Also see: Our main 2019 Women’s World Cup page.
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