Sweden v Canada | Round of Sixteen 2019

FIFA Women's World Cup | Parc des Princes

Canada had the better of the first 30 minutes, but once Sweden found their rhythm, they took control. Stina Blackstenius rounded off a rapid counter-attack to put the Europeans ahead, but they required a brilliant penalty save from Hedvig Lindahl to secure the 1-0 victory and move into the quarter-finals.

“We got the one counter wrong… That’s all you need to get wrong in these matches. The story of the game was going in our favour. We were getting closer and closer. We had these final passes that were not really on point. I was thinking it would come. I’m disappointed with the result, but not the performance. I’m proud of this team.”
Kenneth Heiner-Moller, Canada Coach.

Canada failed to score in a knockout-phase game for the first time in the FIFA Women’s World Cup. An unwanted first for Canada. Sweden, who were eliminated in the Round of 16 in 2015 by Germany, avoid falling at the same stage.

It was all about the second half for the Swedes in Paris. The quick thinking of Asllani and the Blackstenius goal changed the tone of the game. After that we saw a more confident, creative Sweden. But it could have all been for nothing when Canada got a penalty. However, veteran Hedvig Lindahl showed just why she is considered one of the best goalkeepers in Swedish football history and made a brilliant save – and when it mattered the most. A huge confidence boost for the Swedes as they head into the quarter-finals.

“Above all I am proud of the players, there’s a courage in trying to play your way out of situations. I did feel we made use of that positively. Kosovare’s pass, Stina’s decisiveness, Hedvig’s save, there were a lot of heroes towards the end of the match too.”
Peter Gerhardsson, Sweden coach.

Canada have been eliminated by Sweden in a game that was energetic, intense and exciting. Despite a strong start for Canada in the first half, Sweden gained control and created several dangerous opportunities. The second half followed a similar pattern with Sweden stabilising Canada, after which they applied pressure. With Canada pushing forward, the Swedes were ready to pounce on the opportunity from a counter-attack and scored. Canada’s players were visibly shaken, especially after a missed penalty. Regardless, this Canadian team and all Canadians should be mightily proud of their performances at France 2019.

Image: Kane Oosty/FIFA