After two consecutive World Cup losses against Brazil, the Matildas are in no doubt about the task that faces them when they take on Marta and co in the round of 16 at the FIFA Women’s World Cup in Canada on Monday morning (AEST).
Looking towards the game, Matildas co-vice-captain Emily van Egmond told FourFourTwo that surviving the group of death against the USA and Sweden compared to the relatively less hard group than the Brazilians had will give the team an advantage.
“I think we can win and I think the difference will be our decision making in terms of when to look to possession and when we can look to try and catch them out on the counter," van Egmond said.
"The girls are full of confidence going into this game because we’re getting down to the nitty gritty part of it and if we can get a result here I think we’re on our way.
“We were disappointed about the American result but it didn’t define our tournament. Then bouncing back in the next two games and getting what we needed to progress was great.
"To be able to come out of it is a massive achievement in itself, but obviously we’ve got a very tough task ahead of us in the shape of Brazil.
“We haven’t had an easy game, whereas Brazil may have been able to rest some of their starting players in their group, so coming off the back of a tough group against number two, number five in the world and an up-and-coming great young team in Nigeria, has put us in good stead for the Round of 16.”
Van Egmond knows the Brazilians have quality in the team particularly the attacking three but the 21-year-old believes the Matildas have what it takes to make the quarter finals
“Brazil have got some very good individual players and they’re another top 10 team. They’ve been up there on the world stage for a number of years so it’s going to be an extremely tough task," she said.
"They also look good structurally so we know it’s going to be a tough game but we’re going into it full of confidence as well.
“Obviously Marta is a world class player and always a threat. But there’s also Formiga and Cristiane can always be dangerous.
"Their midfield are very good and they’re just a quality team but in saying that I think we can do the job.”
At only 21 years of age, van Egmond has played 43 games for the national side and co-captained the team when she was only 20. Playing in consecutive World Cups, van Egmond doesn’t see herself as a prominent player just another member of the Matildas.
“I think everyone is key here. I don’t think there is anyone you could single out that has a bigger role than anyone else in the team,” van Egmond said.
“In terms of it being my second World cup, it’s the same as my first really, I’m like a kid in a candy shop and I love it.
"But obviously four years on I’m a bit more experienced and again to come out of the group we got drawn in has put us in good spirits for this game against Brazil."
Van Egmond also revealed what the World Cup has been like in terms of the support from back home and the assistance the team has received in Canada.
“I’ve heard the support and coverage back home has been unreal," she said.
"The support here has been really good as well. We’ve had a pretty big following here with friends and families and supporter tours so it has been great for the team.
"I would like to hope that we’ve got some of the locals on board. Against the USA we certainly did and hopefully there will be some of the Moncton locals cheering for us on Sunday as well.”comments