Much like the Caltex Socceroos next month against Honduras, Australia’s Westfield Young Matildas will be part of a winner takes all match over the coming days with a place at the 2018 FIFA U20 Women’s World Cup in France on the line.
On Wednesday in Nanjing, China, Gary van Egmond’s Westfield Young Matildas were defeated 3-0 by DPR Korea in the Semi Final of the 2017 AFC U19 Women’s Championship.
The result means that van Egmond’s side will now have to defeat hosts China PR in the play-off for third place on Saturday, which will kick-off at 6pm (AEDT).
A Kim Pom Ui penalty nine minutes into Wednesday’s encounter put DPR Korea ahead, before the reigning FIFA U20 Women’s World Champions doubled their advantage just before the half hour mark through forward Sung Hyang Sim. Sim scored her second of the game in the 65th to round out the scoring.
Following the match van Egmond congratulated DPR Korea on their win, but said Australia would be well prepared to tackle China PR in Saturday’s crucial play-off fixture.
“Full credit to (DPR) Korea, they deserved to win,” said van Egmond. “Overall they were the better side.”
“We feel very well prepared [for Sunday’s play-off]. It’s very important for us to keep to our principles, not only from a result point of view but from a player development point of view.”
“We have a situation where we have been able to rest a number of players for the next game,” concluded van Egmond.
China PR lost 5-0 to Japan in the competition’s second Semi Final, which was also held on Wednesday.