Late goal ends our Swedish trio's World Cup dream


Late goal ends our Swedish trio's World Cup dream

Amanda Ilestedt is dejected after losing to Spain in the World Cup semi-finals

Stina Blackstenius, Amanda Ilestedt and Lina Hurtig saw their hopes of winning the 2023 Women’s World Cup end after a late flurry of goals ended with Spain beating them 2-1 in the semi-final.

The game in Auckland was goalless going into the final 10 minutes, but Salma Paralluelo put Spain ahead on 81 minutes when she drilled the ball into the bottom corner, but six minutes later, having literally just been introduced off the bench, Lina nodded the ball into the path of fellow substitute Rebecka Blomqvist to find the net and seemingly set up extra-time.

However, 93 seconds later Olga Carmona received possession from a corner and her shot from the edge of the box clipped the crossbar on its way into the net to break Swedish hearts, who have now been eliminated from the competition at the final-four stage in each of the last three editions.

Stina and Amanda started the game, with the former being replaced by Blomqvist on 77 minutes while the centre-back remained on the field for the entirety, but coudn’t add to her four-goal tournament haul.

The result sees Spain reach their first-ever Women’s World Cup final, where they will take on the winner of Wednesday’s England v Australia clash - meaning there is guaranteed to be some Arsenal representation in the final with Alessia Russo, Lotte Wubben-Moy, Caitlin Foord and Steph Catley all hoping to make it to the showpiece.

Our Swedish trio will take on the loser of that game in Saturday’s third-place play-off, as they hope to earn a bronze medal for their displays during their time in the tournament.

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