Matilda’s Bronze Medal Match Outlook Against Sweden

Noah Strang
By:
Noah Strang
19/08/2023
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Sweden Vs. England: Bronze Medal Game Outlook

The Matildas search for their first ever World Cup medal in today’s clash with Sweden as they look to end their home World Cup on a high note.

News Insights

  • Matchup outlook with Sweden.
  • Bronze medal on the line.
  • Alanna Kennedy out with a concussion.
  • Gustavsson sticking with same starting lineup despite fatigue question marks.

The Matildas have one final World Cup game in front of their home fans at Brisbane Stadium with a bronze medal on the line. With Sweden as their opponent tonight, the Matildas are hungry to end their World Cup on a high with their countries first ever medal.

Game Outlook

Australia and Sweden will kick off their bronze medal match at 6PM local time tonight at Brisbane Stadium. Of course, the Matildas will have the crowd at their back but will also be playing with an extra mental advantage as this was the site of their quarterfinal win over France. 

The game is expected to be a closely fought and competitive matchup with most betting sites have Sweden as very marginal favourites. 

Australia should look to push the pace and will rely on their counterattack which has worked so well for them in this tournament. It’s been said about nearly all their games so far but with the rate at which that style has been effective, there is no reason to change now. 

The addition of a healthy Sam Kerr into the starting lineup only makes their counterattack more explosive with her outstanding pace and world class finishing ability. 

This was displayed in spades with her goal against England where a forced turnover led her to finding the ball at the halfway line and taking on the English defense before her phenomenal shot found the net. 

The battle in the midfield will also play a huge role in this game as the Aussies cannot let the Swedes control the pace of play. 

The grouping of Hayley Raso, Katrina Gorry, Kyra Cooney-Cross, and Caitlin Foord has been quality for the Matildas all tournament long aided the backline and contributing heavily to the offense. Ball retrieval and quick dispersals will be key for the Matildas to come out on top. 

Sweden is a veteran squad with loads of big game experience having played in the Olympic Final in Tokyo. They will not be fazed by the pressure of the match and won’t beat themselves. 

The midfield, led by Mary Fowler’s Manchester City teammate FilippaAngeldahl has been a solid group all tournament suffocating ball carriers and getting the ball to their offensive playmakers. 

The Matildas biggest and most important task will be containing Sweden’s attack. In particular, strikerStinaBlackstenius and winger FridolinaRolfo will be keyed on by Australia. 

Though neither have dominated this World Cup with three goals combined, to underestimate them would be a mistake as both contain the class necessary to take over the game. With Rolfo zipping down the wing and Blackstenius playing up front, the Matilda’s fullbacks and centrebacks will have to be careful not to commit forward. 

Alanna Kennedy Out Again

After a surprising announcement before their semi-final match that Alanna Kennedy was unable to play due to illness, more news has now come out that she is suffering concussion symptoms from their match against France. 

The loss is a big hit for the Matilda’s backline as Kennedy had played every minute in the World Cup until the semi-final. 

Starting Lineup from the Semi-final Expected to Remain Unchanged

Australia has made use of the least substitutes of all teams in the World Cup. Thus, many have been calling for Tony Gustavsson to make use of his squad depth for this game. 

It doesn’t look like this will be the case, or at least not in the starting lineup with Gustavsson stating: “I can’t pick based on emotions … I’m going to make sure we have a line-up here that is the strongest starting line-up we can have, but also the strongest finishing line-up.

Though the starters are expected to remain the same, Gustavsson may look to make more substitutions throughout to keep fresh players on the pitch. 

The Matildas have already made history in this World Cup and have ignited the nation behind them. Tonight, they will look to add to that history with the team’s first ever World Cup Medal in their bronze medal match with Sweden.