By 90Min
June 22, 2019

The Women's World Cup round of 16 got underway on Saturday, with the first two quarter finalists decided in two entertaining games that both once again featured VAR.

Germany continued their fine, flawless form, as they beat Nigeria 3-0 in Grenoble to continue their run of reaching at least the quarter-finals at every single tournament. Later on that day, Norway beat Australia after a penalty shootout in a tight affair in Nice to reach the final eight.

Here's the full breakdown on the first two fixtures of the knockout stages.


Germany 3-0 Nigeria

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In the first match of the knockout stages, Germany met Nigeria at the Stade de Alpes. Die Nationalelf were looking to build on their flawless group stage record as they won Group B, while the Super Falcons had reached the round of 16 as a best third-placed team on goal difference.


Nigeria had a flurry of chances in the opening 15 minutes, with Francisca Ordega having an early chance at the near post. Lina Magull then had a wonderful chance to give Germany the advantage minutes later, but Osinachi Ohale made a fantastic block from close range.

Germany took the lead after 20 minutes through their captain Alexandra Popp, as she scored on her 100th international appearance. The ball was wonderfully crossed in by Magull, and Popp guided her header into the bottom corner brilliantly to give the Germans the lead.

Seven minutes after their opening goal, an eventual VAR check awarded Germany a penalty. Upon review, referee Yoshimi Yamashita deemed that Evelyn Nwabuoku's follow through on her clearance had fouled Magull, and was worthy of a foul and therefore a penalty.

Sara Däbritz stepped up for the spot kick, and kept her cool to fire it right into the bottom corner to double Germany's advantage within the opening half hour. It was a big blow for Nigeria to go into half time two goals down, a blow which would ultimately cost them.

In the second half, while the Germans seemed to slightly take their foot off the pedal, Nigeria fought on and on as they searched for a way back into the game. While the Super Falcons couldn't get a goal for their troubles, their determination was wonderful to see.

Maja Hitij/GettyImages

Martina Voss-Tecklenburg's side added their third goal with eight minutes to play, as a misjudged pass from the Nigerian defence put it on a plate for Lea Schüller, who struck it sweetly into the bottom corner with her first touch to wrap up an emphatic 3-0 win for the Germans.

Germany travel up north to Rennes for their quarter-final clash, where they will face either Sweden or Canada at the Roazhan Park, as the two sides face off on Monday in Paris.


Norway 1-1 Australia (4-1 Pens)

Martin Rose/GettyImages

Norway and Australia met in the second game of the day, as the Group A and C runners-up faced off in Nice. Norway made it through with wins either side of their defeat to hosts France, while an emphatic 4-1 win over Jamaica on the final matchday saw Australia progress.

Australia almost took the lead after 24 seconds, as Sam Kerr struck just wide of the post. Kerr had a few more early chances for the Matildas as she spurred on their attack, but they couldn't capitalise early on as it remained goalless.

Norway struck first just after the half hour mark, thanks to a tidy finish from Isabell Herlovsen. The Gresshoppene striker was played through into the box, and curled her shot past the Australian goalkeeper to break the deadlock.

Australia thought they had a lifeline back into the game as they were awarded a penalty, as Maria Thorisdottir was deemed to have handled the ball. However, a long but crucial VAR check decided that it had gone off her chest as intended, as the referee reversed her decision.

The Matildas had chance after chance in the second half, but couldn't draw level. Kerr had her goal disallowed for offside, and Australia had numerous penalty appeals turned down as they couldn't find a way through the Norwegian defence.

After 14 attempts on goal to no avail, Australia finally drew level in the 83rd minute as Elise Kellond Knight's corner curled all the way in. Caroline Graham Hansen's late effort for Norway then agonisingly rolled across the goal line in the dying seconds, but failed to go in - meaning the game went to extra time.

Martin Rose/GettyImages

In the first half of extra time, Alanna Kennedy received a straight red card for committing a foul and denying a goalscoring opportunity. However, the two sides could not be separated after two hours of football, as the game went to a penalty shootout.

Australia missed two of their penalties, as Kerr skied her penalty over the bar and Emily Gielnik's penalty was saved. Ingrid Engen stepped up for the decisive penalty for Norway, and found the bottom corner as they scored four perfect penalties to secure their quarter-final berth.

Norway will play in the first quarter-final on 27 June, where they will meet England or Cameroon in Le Havre, after the two sides meet in Valenciennes on Sunday.

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HOLE YARDS PAR R1 R2 R3 R4
OUT
HOLE YARDS PAR R1 R2 R3 R4
IN
Eagle (-2)
Birdie (-1)
Bogey (+1)
Double Bogey (+2)