The Netherlands and Sweden face off in the semifinal of the 2019 Women’s World Cup as both teams look to surprise their respective critics and secure their place in the final, as reported by CBS Sports. In a matchup between a veteran of the tournament and a relative newcomer, Sweden makes their fourth appearance in the semifinal out of eight total appearances in the World Cup, while this marks the first time the Netherlands have made it this far in the tournament. But in the international game, history doesn’t mean too much, and the Dutch women bring their FIFA ranking of eighth in the world against the ninth-ranked Swedes in a match considered by many to be too close to call.
While the Netherlands’ time as one of the premier nations on the global stage has been brief, there is no doubt that it has been impactful as the Dutch women look to secure their second consecutive international trophy on the back of their victory in the 2017 Women’s Euros. The Netherlands have secured some impressive results on their way to the semifinal, ending the Japanese women’s quest for a third consecutive World Cup final in the Round of 16 before putting to rest the underdog run of Italy with a 2-0 victory, which saw them outshoot the Italian women 21-6 with goals from Vivianne Miedema and Stefanie van der Gragt.
The Dutch attack has come alive as the tournament has gone on, having scored either two or three goals in every game since their opener against New Zealand, with Miedema’s three goals leading the way followed by fellow forward Lieke Martens’ two. The overwhelming attack has been a theme of the Netherlands’ 2019, as they have outscored teams 25-8 over 12 matches.
However, Sweden holds the advantage in head-to-head matchups, winning 10 of 21, with six draws and five defeats. While the Dutch have made their name with scoring, Sweden brings their dominant defense into the semifinal, having allowed 19 goals in their last 16 games. Their 2019 form sees them allowing nine goals in 12 matches, with more than half of those goals being allowed to the two top-ranked teams in the world: the United States and Germany.
While they have made their name for their defense, Sweden proved their attacking ability in their quarterfinal upset of Germany, pulling off an incredible come-from-behind victory over the Germans to progress 2-1. In their five World Cup matches, Sweden has scored 10 goals spread out among eight different goalscorers.
Date: Wednesday, July 3
Time: 9 p.m. local, 8 p.m. BST, 3 p.m. ET
TV Info: Fox Sports 1 (U.S.), BBC One (UK)