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Australia 0-0 France (7-6 on pens): Hosts in semis after shootout drama
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PA Sport staff
Press Association
Australia celebrate their penalty success (Tertius Pickard/AP)
Australia celebrate their penalty success (Tertius Pickard/AP)

Cortnee Vine sent Australia into their first World Cup semi-final as she scored the winning penalty in the co-hosts’ 7-6 shoot-out success against France.

The game concluded with a dramatic set of spot-kicks which saw multiple misses and a VAR intervention.

However, after three successive missed penalties, Vine ensured that the Matildas booked their place in the final four.

Both sides had chances to win the game in normal time but an end-to-end contest finished goalless.

France controlled the game well in the opening stages with Kadidiatou Diani causing problems and, after getting the better of Alanna Kennedy, slicing an effort across the goal.

Australia were given another scare following a string of corners as Eugenie Le Sommer played the ball back into the box but Maelle Lakrar smashed her effort over the bar.

The hosts began to see a little more of the ball as the half progressed and forced France to scramble from a corner kick before Steph Catley’s free-kick was cleared.

Le Sommer’s deflected shot was then saved by West Ham goalkeeper Mackenzie Arnold, but Les Bleues were knocking on the door again from a corner when Selma Bacha whipped in a dangerous cross and Arnold denied Lakrar.

Australia then had a golden opportunity to take the lead five minutes before the break following a miscommunication between Pauline Peyraud-Magnin and her defence with Emily van Egmond taking advantage.

She found Mary Fowler in the centre of the box with a seemingly open goal, but a fantastic bit of last-ditch defending from Elisa de Almeida saw her clear.

An energetic start to the second half saw Australia on the front foot and a poor ball from Peyraud-Magnin went straight to Fowler, but she shot wide.

Captain Sam Kerr came on in the 55th minute and made an instant impact as Hayley Raso forced Peyraud-Magnin into a save from a long-range shot, with Fowler then having another chance as she fired straight at the goalkeeper.

The game headed to extra-time where France thought they had the breakthrough when Kennedy nodded into her own net from a corner, but the goal was disallowed for a foul from Wendie Renard.

Substitute Cortnee Vine had a great chance to stab the ball home but narrowly missed the bottom corner and Arnold made a great save after the break from Becho.

Becho’s tight shot was comfortably saved again by Arnold in the final minutes of added time and a last-minute change saw Solene Durand come on for Peyraud-Magnin with penalties in mind.

Bacha’s opening spot-kick was well-saved by Arnold and Foord gave Australia the advantage, tucking the ball into the bottom corner.

But Australia soon lost their advantage as Durand denied Steph Catley.

Arnold made an excellent diving save to flick the ball on to the post to stop Eve Perisset but the goalkeeper, who took the next penalty herself, smashed against the post when a goal would have sent Australia through.

With the scores level at 6-6, the drama intensified when Arnold saved Kenza Dali’s kick, but VAR ruled the goalkeeper was off her line. However she saved the retaken penalty as well.

Again Australia could not take advantage as Durand saved from Clare Hunt, but Becho then hit the post and Vine successfully sent Australia through.


Women's World CupAustralia WAustraliaFranceFrance W
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