It’s coming home: Matildas back with a bang in thrilling win against Brazil

As Yallop tried to vault over the onrushing Leticia, she accidentally struck her head with a knee, leading to a lengthy stoppage before she was eventually cleared to continue.

There were plenty of other nearly moments but it wasn’t until the 38th minute when the Matildas had another clear-cut opportunity – and this time they took it, from a free kick earned by Fowler. Steph Catley’s delivery from the left flank found Sam Kerr, who nodded the ball across the goal face for Polkinghorne to tap in at the back post.

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It meant the Matildas went into the half-time break with their tails up, but two minutes into the second half, they were nearly embarrassed. Australia’s defence was all at sea as a fast break from Brazil put substitute Adriana clear on goal. Fortunately for the hosts, her shot went directly at Lydia Williams, who saved comfortably.

Fowler made it 2-0 in the 66th minute, heading in a terrific cross from van Egmond for the fifth goal of her burgeoning international career. The Matildas then let their guard down, conceding two minutes later as Adriana pounced on some loose defending, much to the delight of a boisterous bay of Brazilian fans at the southern end.

But van Egmond put the result beyond doubt 10 minutes from time, side-footing home from close range after another terrific ball into the box from Catley.

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