Arsenal’s Roord earns Dutch World Cup rewards
PUBLISHED: 17:34 11 June 2019
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New Arsenal signing Jill Roord broke New Zealand hearts with an added time winner as the Netherlands started their World Cup campaign with a win.
Sarina Weigman's side, which also included Gunners duo Vivianne Miedema and Danielle van der Donk, were frustrated all game due to a fantastic performance from the Kiwis who also missed three big chances.
The first chance of the game fell to Barcelona forward Lieke Martens, who danced her way into the area before her snapshot was well saved down low by New Zealand keeper Erin Nayler.
It was then the underdogs who thought that they had taken the lead on 13 minutes when Olivia Chance of Everton Ladies burst forward before her dipping effort cracked the crossbar after beating Sari van Veenendaal all ends up.
In what was a frantic game the Dutch created another fantastic opportunity to take the lead on 15 minutes when Desiree van Lunteren saw her cross met by the dangerous Miedema, however the WSL's top goalscorer headed over the bar.
On 29 minutes Martens had another good chance to put the Dutch ahead as New Zealand failed to clear a corner and Abby Erceg's miscued header found its way to the back post but Martens couldn't hit the target.
Former Arsenal keeper van Veenendaal then made a superb save to stop the Kiwis taking a shock lead after Rosie White played in Sarah Gregorious before her powerful drive was well tipped over the crossbar.
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On the stroke of the break it was the Netherlands who somehow didn't go ahead after New Zealand failed to deal with a former and the ball fell to ex-Gunner Dominique Bloodworth three yards out however the defender dragged her effort wide of an open net.
Gregorius then had a superb chance to put New Zealand ahead on 52 minutes as she met a cross from Betsy Hassett that was superbly kept out by the reactions of the Dutch stopper.
Martens was a constant threat for the Netherlands and she had another good opportunity to break the deadlock as she was played in but her shot sailed wide of the target when she really should have done better.
The Dutch started to take control of the game and Miedema was denied by another fine save by the impressive Neyler.
As the Dutch grew increasingly frustrated they thought they had taken the lead on 68 minutes when van Lunteren blazed over after neat link up play with van de Donk.
Miedema really could have had a hat-trick as on 78 minutes her header from the centre of the box sailed over following an inch-perfect Sherida Spitse cross.
Just as the side in Orange thought they had ran out of time they had a fantastic chance on 90 minutes when Merel van Dongen saw her effort blocked following yet another perfect ball from Spitse.
However with only seconds remaining the European champions did find their winner when Roord headed in to send the Dutch supporters in wild celebrations.
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