Photo by USA Today Sports
By RYAN TOLMICH
The 2015 Women’s World Cup is still in its infancy, but the tournament has already had what might be its most entertaining game.
Nigeria came from behind twice to grab a 3-3 draw against Pia Sundhage and Sweden in their Group D opener on Monday. Nigeria initially came back from 2-0 down in the first half, but also needed an 87th-minute equalizer from Francisca Ordega to tie the Swedes.
After conceding two goals in the opening 31 minutes, Nigeria battled back early in the second half with finishes from Ngozi Okobi and Asisat Oshoala in the 50th and 53rd minutes, respectively. Sweden produced an answer in the form of a 60th minute go-ahead goal from Linda Sembrant before Ordega’s late leveler saw Nigeria snatch a share of the points.
Sweden returns to action Friday as head coach Sundhage takes on her former side in the U.S. Women’s National Team, while Nigeria faces Australia that same day.
Here’s a closer look at Monday’s other Women’s World Cup results:
PENALTY KICK FINISH LEADS JAPAN OVER SWIZERLAND
It may not have been pretty, but Japan did just enough to start the its championship defense with three points.
The 2011 World Cup champions benefitted from a Aya Miyama penalty kick in the 29th minute to top Switzerland, 1-0, in Group C.
Japan’s penalty came as a result of a foul in the box that saw Swiss goalkeeper Gaelle Thalmann clatter into Japan’s Kozue Ando. Miyama stepped up and smashed the ensuing penalty to the lower left corner, sealing the victory for Japan.
The Japanese return to action Friday against Cameroon. Switzerland, meanwhile, will battle fellow losers Ecuador earlier that day.
CAMEROON PUTS SIX PAST ECUADOR
Cameroon kicked off their World Cup experience in impressive fashion. Real impressive fashion.
Led by a Gaelle Enganamouit hat-trick, Cameroon cruised past an overmatched Ecuador, 6-0, in their Group C opener.
Enganamouit provided finishes in the 36th, 73rd and 94th minutes, the last of which was via a penalty kick. Christine Manie and Gabrielle Onguene also provided goals from the spot, while Madaleine Ngono Mani scored the opener in the 34th minute.
If the South Korea’s shoddy performance vs Brazil today was any indication of their team that frustrated the USWNT a couple of weeks ago, then we are definitely in trouble to compete deep into this years WWC. Brazil ran a possession and passing clinic on the Koreans. That they didn’t score 5-6 goals today is beyond me.
Horrible penalty call against Switzerland…