Colombia Progresses To The Women's World Cup Quarterfinals For The First Time After Defeating Jamaica
Colombia progresses to the Women's World Cup quarterfinalsfor the first time after defeating Jamaica, while France defeats Morocco. Colombia advanced to the Women's World Cupquarterfinals for the first time in the country's history with a tense 1-0 win over Jamaica in Melbourne on Tuesday, while France easily defeated Morocco to advance to the last eight.
Catalina Usmescored the game-winning goal for Colombia, becoming the first player in this tournament to crack Jamaica's tenacious defense. The Colombians' reward is a last-eight encounter against reigning European champion and world No.4 England in Sydney on Saturday, a match the South American team is capable of winning despite a 21-place difference in the global rankings.
France's 4-0 win against Morocco, who had reached the last 16 in its last appearance in the championship, wins Les Bleues a last-eight match against co-host Australia on Saturday.
The improbable travels of Colombia, Morocco, and Jamaica to the knockout rounds will be a big reason why this tournament will be seen as a success. After all, what is athletic romance if not conventional powerhouses collapsing and underdogs flourishing against the odds?
However, Morocco struggled against one of the tournament favorites, France, falling behind 3-0 after only 23 minutes, while Colombia and Jamaica also seemed to be hampered by the aftermath of defeat.
Colombia, after doing just enough to upset Jamaica, became the first South American country to reach the last eight since Brazil in 2011. Colombia coach Nelson Abada told FIFAafter the game that it was a "unique" event for women's soccerin Colombia and South America.
This is the triumph of a human group that has worked hard to achieve consistency, to have a trade, character, personality … and today we played and won well.- Nelson Abada
After the final whistle, some Jamaican playerswere in tears. However, the country's involvement in the round of 16 is extremely noteworthy.
The Reggae Girlz not only advanced from a group that included favorites France and Brazil, but they did it despite having to issue a statement prior to the tournament expressing their "utmost disappointment" with the country's soccerassociation.
The team had missed previous friendlies owing to "extremedisorganization" and had "showed up repeatedly without receiving contractually agreed upon compensation." The Jamaica FootballFederation (JFF) stated on its website that "things have not been done perfectly" but that it was "working assiduously to resolve" players' complaints.
Chinyelu Asher, who represented Jamaica in the 2019 World Cup, told CNN before the competition began that the objective of the remark was to make the federation take the women's squad more seriously.
Around $49 million of the record $110 million that will be awarded as prize money for the World Cup will go directly to individual players. The other $90 million will be divided among the participating federations, and it will be up to those federations to decide how much, if any, of this money will be distributed to the teams and players.
Despite the fact that Jamaica's participation in this tournament came to an end in Melbourne, the players have shone brightly on the international stage and, one would think, have made it hard to overlook them.
Jamaica’s track and field great, after the match posted something like this on social media:
You made us all proud.- Usain Bolt
The first match started like a penalty shootout. Like France and Brazil, Colombia failed to break down Jamaica's well-organized defense. Jamaica's coach Lorne Donaldson had pushed his players to score, but they only had two attempts on target and didn't have enough possession to threaten Colombia.
Linda Caicedo, Colombia's promising 18-year-old, showed glimpses, but defense won the encounter, save for Usme's magic. In the 51st minute, Colombia's captain gently handled Ana Guzman's wonderful pass and scored past Jamaica's Rebecca Spencer. The goal made history, fittingly.
Jamaica almost equalized after Colombia's Catalina Perez fumbled on her goalline, but Colombia counterattacked fast and concerned Jamaica again, but Caicedo was deemed offside.
Caicedo had greater leeway on the left wing as the game went on, but Jamaica protected the Real Madrid star who has lit up this tournament with her ball skills. Jamaica missed a late equalizer as Drew Spence headed inches wide.
Colombia's Leicy Santos struck the post in the last minutes as Jamaica sought an equalizer. Despite a late flourish, Jamaica's unimaginative approach doomed it.
Later that day in Adelaide, France swiftly surged 3-0 up, practically ending the game as a battle in the first half and demonstrating why the squad is considered the favorite to win the competition. Les Bleues took possession after two beautiful team goals.
After some good build-up play by her teammates on the left wing, Kadidiatou Diani scored. Diani then provided by finding Kenza Dali, who arrowed home her stroke, leaving Morocco with a mountain to climb.
Sloppy defence subsequently made Morocco's task of mounting a comeback nearly impossible, as Eugénie Le Sommer scored her 91st international goal, reaching the far post as France displayed its ruthlessness.
Morocco was more competitive in the second half, but Le Sommer headed home at the back post in the 70th minute for her second goal of the game. Even though France won easily, Morocco made significant contributions to a tournament in which it made history.