2015 WWC – Group A: New Zealand vs Canada Match Recap

14 Jun

A double rainbow to start the game but there was no pot of gold awaiting either team at the end. A 0-0 stalemate. It was a high-tempo affair, full of exciting moments and agonizing moments. There was some thought before the game that Canada would have the upper-hand given that Herdman used to coach the New Zealand team. This experience proved to be for naught, as both teams remained evenly matched at every position throughout the entire game.

Prior to this game, all hell broke loose weather-wise. A severe thunderstorm warning had been issued about mid-morning, and one of the volunteers I worked with monitored the situation all day. The wind and rain picked up steadily as the China-Netherlands game wound to a close. The hour between the two games was the worst though. A few brave souls stayed in their seats but most headed for the concourse to keep dry. I remained completely dry by staying inside our office until after the game restarted. I’m no fool.

CHQisuNWIAAHalSNew Zealand: n/a
Canada: n/a

Lineups

New Zealand: Stott, Hearn, Nayler, Erceg, Wilkinson (89′, Pereira), Riley, Hassett (’77, Bowen), Percival, Gregorius (80′, White), Duncan, Longo

Canada: Buchanan, Tancredi, Filigno (63′, Kyle), Schmidt, Lawrence, Sesselmann (68′, Moscato), Sinclair, Chapman, McLeod, Scott (73′, Leon), Belanger

LYG Player of the Match: Nayler, NZL

Hb&Hb Headband of the Match: Scott, CAN

Pre-Game

Game Highlights

The referee stopped the play about 4 minutes in due to the lightning around the stadium. A 30-minute delay ensued while the rain kept pouring down.

Schmidt shake, shake, shaking it off.

We had a good chuckle in the office when they were showing Herdman having some fun in the hallway.

Once back in action, New Zealand via Hearn got the scoring chances started with a lovely header. McLeod with the fingertip push over the bar.

Canada didn’t record a shot until the 22nd minute when point-blank header from Filigno went straight to Nayler.

Then it was time for “Penalty or No Penalty?” In the 31′, Chapman took Wilkinson down in the box.


Referee unhesitatingly said yes! And then brandished a yellow card to Sesselmann for complaining. Huh. Hearn stepped up and did this:

Ohhhh…boom!!!!! No goal!

I swear, McLeod must have a deal with the devil. The woodwork keeps bailing her out in key situations.

Just before halftime, Canada scored but Tancredi was ruled offside.

We couldn’t see the flag at the game so it took a few seconds before we realized what happened.

Second half got underway almost the same way as the first, with a fingertip save. This time it was by eventual POTM Nayler in the 47′ off a quick snap from Sinclair.

Buchanan had one her signature tackles in the 66′ minute. She’s only 19yo folks!

It lead to this corner kick which gifted Hearn another opportunity for McLeod to make a save.

Schmidt banging it off the crossbar at the 72-minute mark was likely payback for the woodwork ping-pong save on China’s free-kick in Canada’s first game.

This final chance for Canada in the 86′ by Sinclair pretty much sums up the match at both ends.

Oh so close and yet oh so not.

Game Photos

Post-Game

https://instagram.com/p/32gt_biBig/?taken-by=hopechaser11

Quotes

John Herdman, Canada coach

That was a very entertaining match. New Zealand were tough as we expected, they were physical and good with the set-plays. I thought we were the better team but we need to hit the back of the net. We defended resolutely. That was a dominant second half for long periods, and we just needed to capitalise. All-in-all another solid performance from Canada, we just need to find the net and give the fans something to cheer.

Tony Readings, New Zealand coach

We are disappointed not to come away with all three points again. We feel we should have at least four points by now. We created many chances and we have struggled to score in these past two games, but one day we will beat someone three, four, five-nil. We have been very good defensively, now it is just a matter of working on things at the other end of the pitch. This group is very tight. We know China so well, and it is always going to be tight when we play them.

Final and Random Thoughts

Yes, Herdman. You do need to find the back of the net. The only way that is going to happen though is if the attack actually start to attack. Once again, chances were stymied by a forced adherence by the players to following the same movements over and over and over and over. This insistence on passing when unleashing a thunder-bastard is the right decision is beyond frustrating. Be selfish! Take the shot!

Herdman is a great coach when it comes to tending to the emotional and psychological needs of a team. When it comes to the physical play and tactics though, he’s one of the worst. I don’t want a coach who cries when talking about the captain. You think Neid or Sundhage have ever cried over a player? Or Okon? Hell no. There’s no shame in being emotional. But there’s also no shame in being tough either.

I really felt New Zealand was going to take the game. They really went for it. If not for McLeod and Buchanan, they would’ve had it too. I don’t know what they should do differently in their match vs China on Monday. But they, like Canada, need to do better around the goal if they want to advance.

– hopechaser

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