Sam Kerr’s goal for Australia equalizes World Cup semifinal before loss to England

Sam Kerr

England’s goalkeeper #01 Mary Earps concedes a goal by Australia’s forward #20 Sam Kerr during the Australia and New Zealand 2023 Women’s World Cup semi-final football match between Australia and England at Stadium Australia in Sydney on August 16, 2023. (Photo by FRANCK FIFE / AFP) (Photo by FRANCK FIFE/AFP via Getty Images) ORIG FILE ID: AFP_33R99ZG.jpg

What a moment for Sam Kerr.

The 29-year-old forward, recognized as one of soccer’s elite strikers, is held in high esteem within her homeland of Australia. On Wednesday, she experienced a long-awaited moment of glory, netting a truly remarkable goal for The Matildas in the 63rd minute of their World Cup semifinal clash against England. This pivotal goal drew the score level at 1-1, injecting renewed hope into Australia’s aspirations.The instant aftermath saw widespread discussions about the goal’s place among the most exceptional in World Cup history, extending beyond the confines of the 2023 tournament. The narrative was enriched by the fact that the scorer was Kerr, a cherished figure hailing from the local community.

 

Significantly, this marked Kerr’s inaugural goal of the World Cup, a testament to her perseverance after contending with an injury over the past few weeks while representing Chelsey FC. However, the jubilation was short-lived, as Australia’s defensive lapse mere minutes later allowed England to regain the lead through a goal by Lauren Hemp. To compound Australia’s misfortune, the Lionesses dealt the final blow with a decisive strike in the 85th minute, sealing a 3-1 victory.

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“Even after Sam’s goal, there was no fear within the team,” Hemp commented later. “Nervousness wasn’t present; we simply adhered to our style of play. This illustrates the unyielding determination of our squad… Regardless of the challenges we’ve encountered as a unit, we’ve consistently managed them with prowess.”

While Kerr undoubtedly cherished her personal achievement, she’ll likely be haunted by her inability to convert two excellent opportunities late in the game.

In the aftermath, as England celebrated securing their spot in the final against Spain—scheduled for a 6 a.m. ET kickoff on Sunday—the camera focused on a visibly disheartened Kerr. In the meantime, Australia is set to face Sweden in the third-place game at 4 a.m. ET on Saturday.

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