Kerr ‘excited’ to play first Women’s World Cup minutes for host Australia


Kerr, sidelined throughout the group stage due to a calf injury sustained on the eve of the Matildas’ opening match, expressed to the Nine Network that she is “really excited” to set foot on the pitch Monday night, reports Xinhua.

“I will play,” she asserted.

The Matildas are set to face Denmark in front of a sold-out crowd of over 70,000 fans at Stadium Australia, vying for a quarterfinals berth.

Given their impressive 4-0 victory over Canada, Coach Tony Gustavsson is likely to retain his starting front three of Caitlin Foord, Mary Fowler, and Hayley Raso, with Kerr prepared to offer a dynamic presence from the bench.

On Sunday, as her teammates trained intensely, Kerr was spotted on an exercise bike, a component of her tailored return-to-play protocol.

Reflecting on Kerr’s return to the practice field on Saturday, Gustavsson shared, “To see her back with the boots on and touching the ball and be with the team training, and it was a very good feeling for her and a very good feeling for the players and the teammates and a very good feeling for me.”

He further deliberated, “She’s also a player we’ll talk about tonight to see how many minutes would be best suitable and looking at the 90 minutes, potential for extra-time, how to get the best out of Sam Kerr in the game plan tomorrow.”

If Kerr stays on the bench initially, Emily van Egmond is anticipated to hold her midfield position alongside Katrina Gorry and Kyra Cooney-Cross.

Foord and Gorry were the scorers when the Matildas clinched a 3-1 victory over Denmark in international friendlies in Viborg last October.

This win marked Australia’s inaugural triumph over a fellow top-20 ranked adversary in a year, setting off a spree of victories against formidable teams like Canada, Sweden, England, Spain, and France.



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