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Women's WC: Scotland out as Argentina snatch draw

Last updated on: June 20, 2019 12:09 IST

Argentina became the first ever side to come from three goals down to avoid defeat in a women’s World Cup match.

Argentina's Florencia Bonsegundo celebrates scoring their third goal from the penalty spot, on the second attempt, during their Women's World Cup, Group D match against Scotland on Wednesday  

IMAGE: Argentina's Florencia Bonsegundo celebrates scoring their third goal from the penalty spot, on the second attempt, during their Women's World Cup, Group D match against Scotland on Wednesday. Photograph: Gonzalo Fuentes/Reuters

Scotland were knocked out of the women's World Cup on Wednesday after Argentina came back from 3-0 down to snatch a 3-3 draw with a last gasp re-taken penalty following a dramatic intervention from the video assistant referee.

Scotland thought they had survived an almighty scare when keeper Lee Alexander saved Florencia Bonsegundo's spot kick in stoppage time but the VAR judged the keeper was off her line before the kick was taken.

 

Bonsegundo made no mistake with her second effort, sealing a remarkable fight back that left Scotland bottom of Group D and out of the tournament while third-placed Argentina kept alive their slim hopes of making the last 16.

"I'm absolutely gutted for the team," Scotland's Erin Cuthbert, player of the match, told reporters.

"I think we should have put the game to bed. We were on top of the game, but these things happen. It's football. It gives you incredible highs but also incredible lows and we saw that again tonight."

Scotland needed a win to have any chance of getting through and looked to have comfortably sealed victory having taken a 3-0 lead after 70 minutes with goals from Kim Little, Jennie Beattie and Cuthbert.

Argentina should have taken the lead after suffocating Scotland in the early stages and on 17 minutes Mariana Larroquette smashed a header against the bar.

They paid for that miss when Cuthbert burst into the penalty area two minutes later shooting powerfully at keeper Vanina Correa, who saved, but the Chelsea forward reacted quickest to cut the ball back to Little who slid home.

Scotland's Erin Cuthbert and her teammates look dejected after the match against Argentina 

IMAGE: Scotland's Erin Cuthbert and her teammates look dejected after the match against Argentina. Photograph: Lucy Nicholson/Reuters

The goal freed the Scots, who appeared fully in control after the restart with Beattie doubling the lead from a Caroline Weir cross.

Cuthbert then looked to have killed off the match in the 68th minute when she reacted quickest to stroke the ball in after Leanne Crichton headed onto the post.

Yet with little to play for Argentina brought on Dalila Ippolito and Milagros Menendez midway through the second half, rejuvenating their toothless attack.

Menendez first slipped home from a through ball by Ippolito and then Bonsegundo's shot on the 74th minute from outside the box crossed the line setting up a grand-stand finish.

A VAR review then confirmed Aldana Cometti was brought down in the 87th minute, but Bonsegundo's poor penalty was initially saved only for the referee to call for the kick to be retaken after consulting the VAR.

Bonsegundo fired home second time round, as Argentina became the first ever side to come from three goals down to avoid defeat in a women’s World Cup match.

"It's unbelievable what can happen in four minutes," Argentina coach Carlos Borrello told reporters.

"We do have a chance now. Getting fresh players on the pitch and finding the right combinations and positions (was key). I'm left with a bitter taste because if we'd given a little bit more we could have won."

Scotland finished bottom of Group D with one point, a point behind Argentina who have a slim chance of qualifying as one of the best third-placed sides.

White nets double as England top Group D

England maintained their perfect women’s World Cup Group D record when Ellen White’s double gave them a 2-0 win over Japan on Wednesday.

White struck either side of the interval as the Lionesses, who had already qualified for the last 16, topped the pool with nine points, five ahead of second-placed Japan who will next face Canada or the Netherlands.

England coach Phil Neville made eight changes to the team who beat Argentina but it did not cause too much disruption as they dominated a Japan side lacking a cutting edge in attack.

"That's what rotation is all about. It's not about throwing 23 players into a hat and pulling out 11," Neville told a news conference.

"We strategically plan each rotation. Sometimes if you make more than five changes you suffer in the rhythm and flow and I think we did tonight. But I think it was the game we needed to keep us focused."

White collected a superb through pass from Georgia Stanway before chipping the ball over Ayaka Yamashita to open the scoring in the 15th minute.

Yamashita kept her team’s hopes alive with a fine save to deny Toni Duggan’s volley from a Lucy Bronze cross on the hour.

Stanway and Rachel Daly marshalled the midfield well, although Japan looked potentially dangerous when England lost the ball.

Neville's side struggled as the game wore on but White sealed the win when she found the back of the net with a clinical finish after being set up by Karen Carney six minutes from time, her third goal of the tournament in two appearances.

England will play a third-placed team in Valenciennes on Sunday for a place in the quarter-finals while Japan will need to improve significantly if they are to reach the last eight.

"If we keep playing like this we will be knocked out in the next round. My players have strengths and abilities but unless they can display them on the pitch we can't get good results, that’s the reality," Japan coach Asako Takakura said.

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