Matildas seal Olympic spot in style
Australia qualify for the Women’s Olympic Football Tournament
Sam Kerr stars in a thumping AFC play-off win over Vietnam
Kerr is now outright second in the team’s all-time scorers list
Australia have qualified for the Women’s Olympic Football Tournament Tokyo 2020, winning 2-1 in Vietnam to complete a resounding 7-1 aggregate triumph in the AFC play-off.
The Matildas merely needed to avoid a collapse in Cam Pha after winning the first leg 5-0 but set about ruthlessly finishing the job inside the opening half-hour.
Sam Kerr, scorer of a brace in the side’s first meeting, opened the scoring in 15 minutes with a clinically dispatched volley – a goal that took her into outright second place in the Matildas’ all-time scorers list on 42. Only team-mate Lisa De Vanna (47) is now left to aim for.
Kerr then turned provider for Australia’s second 12 minutes later, unselfishly squaring for Hayley Raso to side-foot home from close range and strengthen the visitors’ iron grip on the tie.
Vietnam reduced the deficit, and reclaimed some pride, early in the second half when Huynh Nhu snatched on a slack back-pass to lob home from 35 yards. But Australia were able to see out the match in comfort, knowing that their place at Tokyo 2020 was assured.
This will be the Matildas’ fourth Women’s Olympic Football Tournament and they will be hoping to eclipse their best-ever finish at the tournament by progressing beyond the quarter-finals for the first time.