The Women’s World Cup served up another thrilling surprise when the Philippines clinched a monumental 1-0 victory against co-hosts New Zealand.
New Zealand 0-1 Philippines
Prior to this match, New Zealand, fondly known as the Football Ferns, had earned the status of favourites, particularly after an outstanding upset over Norway in the tournament’s kickoff match.
The team had aspirations of sealing their place in the top 16 with a successive win, but the relentless Philippine squad had other ideas.
In the 24th minute of the match, the tide turned dramatically. Sarina Bolden netted a goal for the Philippines on their first on-target attempt. New Zealand, who until this point had been confidently ruling the game and putting the Philippines’ defense under considerable pressure, were taken aback.
Before the score, New Zealand’s goalkeeper, Vic Esson, had her first real test in the 20th minute, deflecting a menacing free kick.
The subsequent disarray within the New Zealand defense following another free kick led to Sara Eggesvik’s strategic ball finding Bolden, who headed it past the defenders, sending the Filipino fans into euphoria.
Despite New Zealand’s relentless efforts to regroup and generate scoring chances throughout the first half and a resolute offensive in the second half, the Philippines stood firm.
A controversial moment arose in the 68th minute when a header from Jacqui Hand, following a cross from Hannah Wilkinson, was dismissed due to Wilkinson being marginally offside, leaving the New Zealand team and fans deflated.
In the nail-biting closing minutes of the match, both teams sought to change the narrative. The Philippines saw an offside goal from their forward, Carleigh Frilles, while a point-blank shot from New Zealand’s Grace Jale was deftly saved by the Philippine’s goalie, McDaniel.
This victory has made the Philippines the talk of Group A. Now, they approach their final group stage match against 1995 champions Norway, imbued with newfound faith and grit. On the other side, New Zealand is left to regroup before they face Switzerland.
What did Philippines’ head coach say after the victory
“It’s just staggering, miraculous, unbelievable. What the players have done is just mind-blowing, really.
Probably number one[Career best moment]. How can you beat that, beating the host nation in the World Cup? Without question, it’s number one.
Of course we rode our luck, of course New Zealand had three or four unbelievable chances and the VAR call and the inside of the post and, you know, if it was a true reflection of the football match, they’d deserve something in the game. But, you know, as I said the unity and work-rate and the heart from the team was special and we had some luck but we also earned that luck and for that it’s just a special moment in the history of Philippines’ team sports.Alen Stajčić – Philippines head coach
“It feels amazing and hopefully this isn’t the last accolade we achieve. You know, this is a team win, this isn’t just me, this isn’t just what I have done, this is what the team’s done, this is what the coaching staff has done, what everyone behind the scenes has done. You know, we’ve put in our work and we’ve come out on top because of it and, you know, we can’t stop now, we’ve got much more work to do.”Olivia McDaniel, Philippines goalkeeper
The current Women’s World Cup is keeping fans on the edge of their seats with its breathtaking performances and unforeseen twists. The Philippine’s victory over New Zealand will be remembered as one of the tournament’s most stunning upsets, illustrating the skill, fervour, and unpredictability that make football so captivating.