Heartbreak for Team GB as Australia end Olympic dream

Members of the Team GB Women's Football Team depart London for the Tokyo Olympics. Picture date: Wed

Members of the Team GB Women's Football Team depart London for the Tokyo Olympics. Picture date: Wednesday July 7, 2021. - Credit: PA

Team GB's Olympic dream ended on Friday as they were knocked out by Australia 4-3 at the quarter-final stage.

Leah Williamson and Kim Little started the game as Nikita Parris was on the bench with Lotte Wubben-Moy missing out on the squad altogether.

For the Matildas Steph Catley and Caitlin Foord started with Lydia Williams on the bench. 

Hege Riise's side started brightly with Lauren Hemp on the left picking out Caroline Weir in space before her low shot was dealt with comfortably by Teagan Micah in the Australian goal. 

A minute later Micah was called into action once more as Weir picked out Kiera Walsh who's shot from just outside the box was once again saved by the keeper. 


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On 12 minutes Team GB had a golden opportunity to take the lead via Rachel Daly as Hemp picked the ball up before playing a pass for Daly who took a touch before from close range lifting her shot over the crossbar. 

It was all one way traffic with Riise's side very much on top when Walsh tried her luck from range after space opened up but the ball cracked off the post before bouncing away to safety. 


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With 27 minutes played Team GB struck the woodwork once more as Daly sent in a looping cross from the left that popped over Micah in the Australians goal head before hitting the inside of the post and bouncing out to Hemp who's shot was brilliantly saved onto the post by the keeper. 

However the first goal did arrive but against the run of play on 35 minutes as Tony Gustavsson's side took the lead when Alanna Kennedy got up to meet a corner leaping over Demi Stokes and Williamson before prodding into the net beyond Ellie Roebuck. 

On the stroke of half-time Lucy Bronze found herself in the book for a crunching challenge on Catley who swung in the resulting free-kick but Roebuck was out quick to claim the loose ball ahead of Chelsea striker Sam Kerr who finished the season as the Women's Super League's top goalscorer. 

Australia had the first opening of the second half when Ellie Carpenter sent a long throw into the box that beat Steph Houghton before falling for Kerr who fired her effort over the crossbar when she lacked composure. 

However Team GB did grab their equaliser when Ellen White got on the end of a delightful cross from Hemp before glancing a header into the net sailing beyond the helpless Micah on 57 minutes. 

Houghton then nearly turned the ball into her own net a matter of moments later as she turned a cross from Hayley Raso onto her own crossbar. 

On 65 minutes Team GB hit the front foot when White met a long throw in from Williamson before taking a touch and wrapping her foot around the strike before the ball zipped across Micah and into the bottom corner. 

Catley and Foord then linked up as Catley whipped in a ball from deep before Foord took a touch but was thwarted by Millie Bright at the back before Team GB cleared their lines. 

Australia did level however on 88 minutes when Kennedy unleashed a cross into the box that once again the Team GB defence failed to deal with as the ball fell perfectly for Kerr who took a touch before thumping her effort past Roebuck. 

That's how the 90 minutes were to end as 30 more were required to see who would advance into the last four of the Olympic games. 

Micah was called into action almost immediately when Walsh let fly from just outside the box but the keeper was equal to it flying through the air to tip the strike over the top showing superb reactions. 


White then forced Micah into action once more as the ball fell into her path following a corner but her shot that looked set for the top corner was well tipped over by the keeper once more. 


Riise then shook things up as Parris came on for Hemp in the 94th minute to try and add more energy into Team GB's play. 


On 100 minutes Team GB were awarded a penalty as Williamson tried to find Parris but her shot was blocked however they won possesion back before sending the ball back into the penalty area as Parris was fouled by Carpenter leaving the referee no choice but to point to the spot. 

Weir grabbed the ball with both hands and confidence but the Scottish International had her weak effort saved by Micah who was in sensational form for her country. 

This would prove to be the turning point in the game as Australia retook the lead when 18-year-old Mary Fowler raced down the field before her strike took a deflection off Bronze before finding the top corner off the net beyond the despairing dive of Roebuck. 

The second half of extra-time started in perfect fashion for Australia as they made it 4-2 when Tameka Yallop delivered a perfectly weighted ball for Kerr who jumped above Houghton to thump a header off the underside of the bar and into the back of the net. 

In a frantic extra-time period Team GB pulled a goal back with five minutes to go as Fran Kirby crossed for White who headed into the net to give her side a glimmer of hope. 

However the equaliser wasn't to come as Team GB's Olympic dream came to an end as Australia advanced into their first ever Olympic Semi-final. 

Team GB: Roebuck, Bronze (Stanway 112),Houghton, Williamson, Stokes (Bright 58),Walsh (Ingle 96),Weir, Daly (Kirby 58), Little (Scott 80), Hemp (Parris 96),White. 

Unused substitutes: Telford.

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