Sweden’s dreams of winning a first Women’s World Cup title were dramatically ended by Spain but they are out to ensure their impressive run does not end without silverware when they meet co-hosts Australia in the third-place playoff on Saturday.
The third-ranked Swedes are playing in their second straight bronze medal match, having finished third at the 2019 World Cup. They came up short in their title bid again on Tuesday, losing 2-1 to Spain in the semi-final in Auckland.
The Scandinavians are aiming to repeat their feat from four years ago and looking forward to the vociferous atmosphere that will greet them at the 52,500-capacity Lang Park.
“I love it, it’s a particular feeling to have an entire stadium against you,” forward Kosovare Asllani told reporters on Friday. “Of course, we were disappointed after the last match. We wanted to go all the way to the final.
“At the same time, playing for a medal is a huge thing, and something that we’re proud of. We don’t want to leave here without it. We want to silence the stadium and bring that medal home.
“Everyone’s more than ready … We’re going to do everything we can to win this medal for Sweden.”
Australia, who beat Sweden 4-0 in Melbourne last November, lost 3-1 to England in their semi-final, with talismanic captain Sam Kerr scoring a stunning goal.
Kerr made her first start of the tournament in that match and her Chelsea team mate Magdalena said she was delighted the striker had recovered from a calf injury that had ruled her out of the group stage.
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