Women’s Olympic football: Team GB top group after late draw with Canada

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A late equaliser from Caroline Weir sent Great Britain through to the quarter-finals of the women’s football tournament in Tokyo 2020 as group winners after a 1-1 draw with Canada.

Scot Weir’s long-range effort took a heavy deflection as GB came from behind in the 85th minute.

With qualification already secured, they needed just a point against Canada to ensure they topped Group E.

Canada had taken the lead through West Ham’s Adriana Leon.

Team GB will now face Australia, led by Chelsea striker Sam Kerr, in the next round.

In the other game in Group E, hosts Japan recorded a 1-0 win over Chile to finish third in the table.

USA draw with Australia but progressTokyo day-by-day guideTV schedule, radio and online coverageTokyo 2020 medal tableCrucial impact off the benchHead coach Hege Riise rotated heavily as GB’s qualification had been secured following victory over Japan on Saturday.

Rachel Daly’s versatility saw her start on the right in attack while Georgia Stanway was to the left of Nikita Parris.

Jill Scott was given the nod in midfield too as Wales’ Sophie Ingle captained the side for the first time.

But GB lacked fluidity in the final third. Lucy Bronze got forward often on the right, but could not link up with Daly, while Parris often dropped too deep, meaning GB did not have a focal point up front.

And sloppiness in possession proved costly in the 55th minute when Ashley Lawrence raced away down the left before cutting it back to an unmarked Leon to thump home the opener.

Riise did not waste time in bringing on top scorer Ellen White and key midfielder Kim Little – and they immediately made an impact.

Little found Weir with a sharp pass as the Manchester City midfielder struck the underside of the crossbar and the inside of the post with a cross-turned-shot.

And it was Weir who got the crucial equaliser with a trademark long-range effort – helped heavily by a deflection off Nichelle Prince.

It ensured GB go into the quarter-finals unbeaten, looking to go one further than their last-eight finish in London 2012.

‘I believe strongly in this team’ Team GB head coach Hege Riise: “I believe strongly in this team. It’s a great team that always finds a way to come back and we did. Closer to the finish, we started to get some momentum and luckily we were good enough to get the goal.

“It was an important goal, we top the group, we’re staying here and we have a little bit more rest so we are happy.

“There are always things you want to improve on. We have played three games against three good opponents and have performed better and better. We haven’t been together that long so we’ll improve every game.”

‘Substitutions changed the energy’ – analysisFormer Great Britain international Karen Carney:

You could see how much Great Britain wanted to win the group.

The first half was cagey and nothing really happened. They got hit with a goal from a counter-attack. It was really good from Adriana Leon in particular.

Then it was about bringing the substitutes on and making changes. They really changed the energy of the game. Eventually they got the deserved equaliser from Caroline Weir.

Line-upsCanadaFormation 4-2-3-1

1Labbé

8Riviere14Gilles3Buchanan10Lawrence

20Schmidt5Quinn

6Rose16Beckie9Leon

13Viens

1Labbé8RiviereBooked at 23mins14Gilles3Buchanan10LawrenceSubstituted forCarleat 80’minutes20Schmidt5QuinnSubstituted forGrossoat 67’minutes6RoseSubstituted forHuitemaat 45’minutes16BeckieSubstituted forFlemingat 45’minutes9Leon13ViensSubstituted forPrinceat 54’minutesSubstitutes4Zadorsky7Grosso15Prince17Fleming18Sheridan19Huitema21CarleGBFormation 4-2-3-1

1Roebuck

2Bronze14Bright16Williamson3Stokes

6Ingle11Weir

12Daly18Scott17Stanway

7Parris

1Roebuck2Bronze14Bright16Williamson3Stokes6IngleSubstituted forKirbyat 77’minutes11Weir12DalySubstituted forWhiteat 63’minutes18ScottSubstituted forLittleat 63’minutes17Stanway7ParrisSubstitutes5Houghton8Little9White10Kirby20Toone21Wubben-Moy22MacIverLive TextMatch ends, Canada 1, Great Britain Women 1.

Second Half ends, Canada 1, Great Britain Women 1.

Ellen White (Great Britain Women) wins a free kick on the right wing.

Foul by Gabrielle Carle (Canada).

Own Goal by Nichelle Prince, Canada. Canada 1, Great Britain Women 1.

Attempt missed. Caroline Weir (Great Britain Women) left footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses to the left. Assisted by Lucy Bronze.

Attempt missed. Lucy Bronze (Great Britain Women) header from the centre of the box misses to the right. Assisted by Caroline Weir with a cross following a corner.

Corner, Great Britain Women. Conceded by Gabrielle Carle.

Substitution, Canada. Gabrielle Carle replaces Ashley Lawrence.

Attempt saved. Ellen White (Great Britain Women) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Leah Williamson.

Attempt missed. Georgia Stanway (Great Britain Women) left footed shot from outside the box misses to the left. Assisted by Nikita Parris following a corner.

Corner, Great Britain Women. Conceded by Vanessa Gilles.

Substitution, Great Britain Women. Fran Kirby replaces Sophie Ingle.

Foul by Nikita Parris (Great Britain Women).

Ashley Lawrence (Canada) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Ellen White (Great Britain Women) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Vanessa Gilles (Canada).

Attempt missed. Georgia Stanway (Great Britain Women) left footed shot from outside the box is too high following a corner.

Corner, Great Britain Women. Conceded by Ashley Lawrence.

Caroline Weir (Great Britain Women) hits the bar with a left footed shot from a difficult angle on the left. Assisted by Kim Little.

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