Young Matildas storm through qualifiers

A comprehensive 3-0 win over Vietnam in Hanoi on Sunday night saw the Westfield Young Matildas book their spot for the 2015 AFC U-19 Championships.

The Aussies needed only a draw to qualify for the tournament in China next year, but an early penalty to Amy Harrison and second half goals to Beatrice Goad and Sunny Franco sealed the result.

The match rounds out an emphatic qualifying phase by the team, who scored an astonishing 28 goals and conceded zero in their three group matches, including a 19-0 thrashing of Singapore - the biggest win in U-20 history.

Ante Juric’s side finished on the maximum nine points from their three group games to ensure they will take part in the AFC under-19 Championships, to be held in Nanjing next August. 

They didn’t have to wait long to get the scoring started on Sunday night, with Harrison burying her spot-kick inside the first eight minutes.

The early goal eased the tension and gave the Westfield Young Matildas confidence and they dominated the remainder of the first half.

Defender Brooke Goodrich fired just over from distance midway through the half, while Harrison almost had a second when she cut through the Vietnam defence only to see her goal-bound shot blocked.

Franco went even closer just before the break, her effort rattling into the woodwork after some brilliant lead-up play by Goad and Harrison.

The hosts upped the pressure early in the second half in search of the goal to get them back into the contest.

But a classic counter-attack by the Westfield Young Matildas just 10 minutes after the break ended with Goad finishing off a brilliant move for her fourth goal of the tournament.

With Vietnam’s spirit broken, the Westfield Young Matildas went in for the kill with Larissa Crummer going close on a couple of occasions to increase the margin.

Franco then capped a superb individual performance seven minutes from time, racing down the right and finishing clinically to complete the scoring on a great night for the Australians.

Westfield Young Matildas Starting XI v Vietnam

Hannah Southwell, Monique Iannella, Brooke Goodrich, Emma Checker, Angela Beard, Natalie Tobin, Kobie Ferguson, Amy Harrison, Sunny Franco, Larissa Crummer, Beatrice Goad

MAIN PIC: Young Matildas goalscorer and Brisbane Roar star, Sunny Franco