FIFAWWC Day 2,3&4

It is typical isn't it the second I say I am going to cover every game I get unwell and spend all day Saturday in bed then on Sunday my nephew comes around so I spend a fair bit of time with him missing some of the Australia game and all the Brazil game. So I have now decided I will have one main focus game per day plus a quick score or min round up (if caught any of the game) for the rest of the games that day.

So day 2 I completely missed but the results were:
Germany 1 - 0 China
Spain 3 - 1 South Africa
Norway 3 - 0 Nigeria

I am actually gutted I missed all these games as it does look like a really good day of football.

On day 3 I managed to catch the back end of the Australia game and WOW I was shocked, there was some pretty scrappy play from Australia and Italy capitalised winning the game 2-1. Australia really need to work on their defensive play if the want to push on in the competition.
The second game of day 3 was Brazil vs Jamaica and I ended up watching the England men's game instead stupidly. This looked like a cracking game and from the highlights it looks like even though Jamaica lost they put up a fight.

Now onto the biggest game of day 3 England vs Scotland, there was no way I was missing this one as it proved to be a brilliant game. When the sides faced off in Euro 2017 England came out as 6-0 winners but recently Scotland are on the rise so I was definitely expecting a much closer game from these 2 teams and it didn't disappoint. I was mainly looking forward to seeing how Cuthbert, Emslie, Mead and Greenwood would do in this game as they are some of the growing names in the game at the moment and this game would be a good way to see how these players would fair up through the tournament. It was Scotland's first world cup appearance and what a way to kick it off against England of all the teams. What surprised me the most wasn't actually anything to do with the game itself but it was all the empty seats around the stadium, I thought it was a sell out?
When the game kicked off Scotland definitely looked up for the game but as the first half progressed they seemed to just drop off a little.
What I loved to see with England was them working the ball around the field well, Jill Scott seemed to be the centre of all this in midfield and became a real playmaker throughout this game, not afraid to get stuck into a challenge and not afraid to help England push forward. The first 10 minutes of the game was really end to end which is just what I was hoping to see and I honestly think this is what helped create a great atmosphere in the ground as both sets of fans were getting behind the teams as they pushed forward.
When it came to the VAR being called upon for the penalty and see it divide people, you can see why as the new rules haven't really been explained properly but to me it was a clear penalty as the Scottish defender definitely made herself bigger by having her arm in an unnatural position when the ball struck it. When Parris stepped up to take it I was a little worried the pressure may have got to her a little but how wrong could I have been? She took it in her stride and took the penalty really well to put England 1-0 up.
One thing I think a lot of teams need to do including England is work on staying on side, now VAR is in play it is easier for the referees to call and players just can't get away with it like they used to, which showed when Beth Mead's goal was ruled out due to White being offside. It could really be costly to a team if they are constantly having goals disallowed due to the offside calls. 
When it came to England's second goal as some as it dropped at White's feet you could just tell that the ball was only heading into the back of the net. It was a clinical finish from Man City's newly signed striker and I am hoping it is a sign of more to come. 
The first half was great from both teams and even though Scotland dropped off a bit they really didn't deserve to go into half time 2-0.
The Scot's really did come out fighting in the second half and you could see just by how much pressure they were applying to the English defence and eventually did break them down for Emslie to make the score 2-1.  It was thanks to the Scottish putting pressure on the English defence that caused a silly mistake to be made and Emslie getting in for the goal, I am glad that out of all the Scots to score it was Emslie as she is an absolutely fantastic player and one of my favourites for the Scottish team. Not only was Emslie a threat through the 90 minutes but so was Cuthbert, getting into some brilliant spaces and having a great chance on goal. She even held her own when one on one with Millie Bright which I didn't expect, unfortunately though during this Millie went down injured and I just hope she is ok. 
Scotland definitely stepped up in the 2nd half and if they play like that against Japan and Argentina I can see them coming away with quite a few points and hopefully progressing further into the competition. I totally agree with Alex Scott though England need to step up their game a lot if they want to win the world cup as at times they were sloppy and didn't take all the chances they were presented with. Even though they came out 2-1 winners against Scotland they really need to do better.
If I had to choose a woman of the match it would definitely have been Jill Scott for this game as she really helped England out.

Day number 4 had just the 2 games being played Japan vs Argentina finished 0-0 with neither side able to capitalise on their chance, a game I really hope England and Scotland were watching as they are their next tests. The game I really wanted to watch though was Canada vs Cameroon. I will admit I have a bit of a soft spot for Canada all thanks to 2 of my favourite players Sinclair and Beckie so I can honestly say get used to seeing plenty of posts about them on here. Unfortunately I missed the first couple of minutes due to travelling home from my grandparents but by the time it got to 13 minutes played I was shocked by the stats 0 shots on target for Canada, 1 for Cameroon, that is something I wasn't expecting to see I thought Canada would be on the constant attack especially with Sinclair so close to that goal scoring record. Will she get it during the competition? 

One player who impressed me through the game was Schmidt, she is a player who caught my eye at the last world cup and she is showing no signs of slowing down, she really isn't afraid to get stuck into a challenge and work to get the ball back and into a position for Canada to go on the attack. What I really didn't expect to see during the first half was Canada being so nervy, both on and off the ball they looked like the occasion may be getting to them and it was quite opposite to the Canada team I am used to seeing, especially the side that turned up against England in April, they looked totally up for the game where as last night they looked like England would have hit a few past them. Granted they were absolutely dominating possession but they just couldn't capitalise on it and find the back of the net. To me it was their final ball that was letting them down whether it was a cross into the box that didn't meet any of their team or a through ball that went straight to a member of the Cameroon defence. Both teams also fell victim to plenty of offside calls, like I said about England you need to be more switched on now there is no escaping the calls, you are going to end up caught out.
I was surprised by just how strong the Cameroon defence could be, at times there was just no getting beyond them. Not only was the defence strong though but the players are physical strong and the smaller Canadians like Fleming really felt full force of this and ended up on the ground plenty of times due to fair challenges that just used the Cameroon players strength, they aren't a team to be taken likely and they really made Canada work hard for their opportunities.
It took a well taken corner to get the Canadian's off the mark and it was Buchannan who ended up heading the ball into the back off the net. It was a straight corner that seemed to hang in the air for a while before Buchannan made connection and scored Canada's first goal of the tournament.

Cameroon weren't going down without fight though and continued to challenge Canada until the final whistle was a blow, I think the rest of the group really need to be weary of them as they could be a real threat. Scott didn't seem to really get into the game for the Canadians but when she did she managed to pull of some good tackles and put in some good passes. Sinclair was playing far too deep for my liking she was having to come back to midfield at times which meant when they went on the break she wasn't where she should have been to put in a shot if she had been where she should be I think Canada would have got a few more goals. 
If I had to choose a woman of the match I think it would definitely be a tie between Schmidt who seemed to be all over the field putting some great play together or Beckie who put an absolute shift in for the full 90 minutes not afraid to get stuck in with defending and not afraid to push forward attacking and taking shots when the opportunity came about. Canada finished the game 1-0 winners.

So there you have it those are days 2,3&4 but I promise we are back to normal now, keep an eye out tomorrow for day number 5.

See you soon

No comments