In their Women’s World Cup clash in Montpellier, Australia went from two goals down to stun Brazil 3-2. Brazil looked strongly in command when they were given a 2-0 lead by a penalty from returning midfielder Marta and header from Cristiane.
But the strike of Caitlin Foord just before the break provided hope for Australia and the cross-shot of Chloe Logarzo and Monica’s own goal finished an amazing turnaround. Australia began the match on the front foot and thought that a penalty was to be awarded after 20 minutes when Tameka Yallop came down under a challange from Thaisa. The decision was assessed by the video assistant referee and was not given, following a delay.
Six minutes later, after Elise Kellond-Knight pulled Leticia Santos down, Brazil was given a spot kick and Marta sent the goalkeeper the wrong way to open the scoring – her 16th goal in a World Cup finals. The 33-year-old has now scored in five consecutive tournaments, beginning in 2003. As Australia looked to strike back, Sam Kerr scratched a shot goal, but in the 39th minute, Cristiane doubled Brazil’s lead.
The veteran forward, who in their opening match scored a hat-trick against Jamaica, nodded in a cross from Debinha after good work from Tamires. Brazil hadn’t conceded a group stage goal since 2003, but that run finished when Foord slipped in from a Kerr flick to put Australia back into the game in the first half of the injury time.
Marta failed to appear for the second half, but with Debinha sending a vicious attempt wide, Brazil was straight on the line. After 58 minutes, Australia levelled when a Logarzo cross deceived goalkeeper Barbara with Kerr looking to pounce and found the bottom corner.
In the 66th minute, when Monica put a ball into the box searching for Kerr into her own net, the comeback was complete. As they came in search of an equalizer and Australia comfortably held on, Brazil failed to generate any clear-cut opportunities.