Welcome to the Sam Kerr Show!

21 Jun

That is not completely fair because, yes, Sam Kerr had an amazing showing but Jamaica ended their World Cup run with plenty to be proud of. Both sets of fans were ready for action.

Before we talk about the match, can we mention how beautiful the stadium in Grenoble is? Or maybe not the stadium but the view??

Okay, back to the match.

The Matlidas and the Reggae Girlz were both ready for this match and the first ten minutes saw plenty of end to end action by both Kerr and Shaw. In a change from the last two matches, Shaw started in the midfield, not as out and out striker. This didn’t stop her from making some great runs from the get go.

Kerr too had opportunities early on – so early on that by the 11th minute, she had scored. Gielnik’s free kick found DeVanna who gave it back to Gielnik who gave it right to Kerr.

From early on, the races and duels between Catley and Grey and Roestbakken and Shaw were evident. However, it was clear that Kerr was going to be relentless in the box. She had a header tipped over the bar by McClure in the 26th minute and a previous header that went wide in the 18th.

Both Grey and Shaw had good chances but neither of them could capitalize. Shaw got a great shot opportunity in the 39th minute but she misfired and it went way over the net. However, the Jamaican defense was found lacking five minutes later when they left Kerr unmarked and she made them pay. Gorry sent her a lovely cross and she headed it right into the back of the net.

 

Jamaica had a lovely surprise for the Australians in the second half when Solaun came off the bench at the half and took a nice assist from Shaw and rounded past Williams and put it in the net for Jamaica’s first World Cup goal. The teamwork between Solaun and Shaw was excellent.

This opened up some space for Jamaica and Matthews and Shaw and Blackwood all saw action in the box. Solaun and Shaw had another great pairing run but Shaw fired wide.

But Sam Kerr was far from done and this time she decided to score with her feet. Raso had a cross which unfortunately hit Campbell’s thigh and landed right at Kerr’s feet and she got her hat trick. She’s the first Australian to score one in a World Cup.

And unfortunately, it was another Jamaican error that led to Kerr’s final goal of the evening. McClure has a bad first touch after a back pass and Kerr jumped right on it and scored.

It’s a shame that Jamaica were put into such a strong group because it would have been great to see them progress as the second half was probably their best half of the tournament. Solaun and Shaw had a great understanding and other players were stepping up. Unfortunately, their defensive line still needs work but I sincerely hope that the Jamaican federation sees what a tremendous job these women have done with so little and gives them the support they need. We need to keep seeing the Reggae Girlz!

Australia are onto the next round. They too need to keep an eye on their defense but if Sam Kerr is able to improve from here? It’ll be fun to watch!

Stade des Alpes, Grenoble, France
Attendance 17,042

Referees: Katalin Kulcsar (HUN), Katalin Torok (HUN), Sanja Roadak (CRO), Maria Sukenikova (SVK)

Lineups

JAM: McClure, Campbell, Plummer (Captain), A Swaby, Blackwood, C Swaby, Shaw, Patterson, Grey (Brown 72’), Matthews (Carter, 59’), Cameron (Solaun, 46’)

AUS: Williams, Carpenter, Kennedy, Catley, Roestabakken, Gielnik (Foord 59’) Logarzo, van Egmond, Gorry (Luik 87’), DeVanna (Raso,63’) d, Kerr (Captain)

– ForzaSusan

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