Belfast Telegraph

Boss Milicic inspired remarkable Aussie comeback, reveals Logarzo


Victory roar: Alanna Kennedy of Australia celebrates following her side's victory
Victory roar: Alanna Kennedy of Australia celebrates following her side's victory

By Simon Peach

Chloe Logarzo paid tribute to head coach Ante Milicic after Australia "came out swinging" in the second half to earn a stunning 3-2 win against Brazil in the Women's World Cup.

Brazil had looked firmly in control when a penalty from returning striker Marta and a header from Cristiane gave them a 2-0 lead.

But Caitlin Foord's strike just before the break offered the Matildas hope and Logarzo's cross-shot and an own goal from Monica completed a stunning turnaround. Logarzo said: "In the changing room it was something else.

"I think Ante really goes in there and is able to just lift us in all the right ways.

"I think the Australian mentality is to come out swinging when our back is against the wall and we like a good fight, so it was just nice for us to be able to come out and get the result that we needed.

"We finally got our composure and kept the ball on the ground and were able to connect our passes and I really like the brand of football that we play."

Milicic said of the comeback victory: "Tonight is one of the finest Australian performances I've seen. The players deserve all the rewards they were given tonight.

"I'm really delighted for them. They never stopped believing, and the coaching staff never stopped believing.

"We kept on believing in our style and in our football and it's an Australian performance to be proud of.

"As the game went on we looked very strong. Physically, we're in great condition. Recovery is going to be important for us and then we move forward to the Jamaica game."

Brazil skipper Marta, who scored her 16th World Cup finals goal in her fifth consecutive tournament, said: "It was supposed to be a very competitive match, and that's what we had.

"We came here to win and advance to the next stage. Now, it's worthless to lament the result. We are still fighting for our spot and should focus on that."

Brazil's other goalscorer Cristiane said: "The plan was to wait for them, looking for counters. But we had a blackout and suffered some silly goals that, honestly, can't happen."

Meanwhile, Li Ying scored with a brilliant first-half volley to earn China victory over debutants South Africa, who face elimination.

The result means Group B rivals Germany qualify for the last 16, with China and Spain hoping to join them.

South Africa will need to defeat two-time champions Germany in their final match by a handsome margin to qualify for the last 16.

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