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Canada eliminated from Women's World Cup in group stage

Canada's 2023 Women's World Cup campaign ended in huge disappointment on Monday after they crashed out at the group stage following a 4-0 loss against co-hosts Australia.

After winning a gold medal at the delayed Tokyo Olympics, Canada had high hopes for the World Cup in Australia and New Zealand.

Drawn in Group B alongside Australia, Nigeria and debutants Republic of Ireland, they had a great opportunity to reach the knockout phase. 

However, it hasn't turned out as hoped.

Head coach Bev Priestman will come under the spotlight for Canada's failure to continue their journey in the Southern Hemisphere with Monday's loss to Australia leaving them third in the group and heading home early.

Penalty miss proves costly

Canada started their World Cup campaign against Nigeria in Melbourne.

Hopes of earning a victory would have been high, having won two of their last three encounters with the Super Falcons and drawing the other.

The opening 45 minutes were tight and tense with Canada dominating possession but failing to register a shot on target, while Nigeria, attempting to play on the counter, hit the target just once.

Just five minutes into the second half, Canada were given a golden opportunity to get on the scoresheet when Christine Sinclair went down in the box under a slightly clumsy tackle from Francisca Ordega.

After a VAR check the penalty was awarded but Sinclair, looking to make history by becoming the first person to score at Six World Cups, saw her spot-kick saved by Chiamaka Nnadozie.

Canada continued to have the lion's share of the ball but were frustrated in front of goal, registering just one further shot on target.

Nigeria had Deborah Abiodun sent off in the 98th minute but that was far too late for Canada to take advantage as the game finished goalless.

Canucks claim first win against debutants

The Republic of Ireland weren't predicted to cause too many problems in Group B as they made their debut in the competition and, having lost 1-0 against Australia in their opener, they played Canada on matchday two.

Ireland did take the lead after just four minutes, scoring their first-ever World Cup goal directly from a corner taken by Arsenal's Katie McCabe.

Canada drew level on the stroke of half time courtesy of an own goal as Brighton midfielder Megan Connolly put through her own net.

Just shy of 10 minutes into the second half Canada were ahead with Adriana Leon scoring her first-ever World Cup goal.

The Canucks held on for a 2-1 win and were in a decent position with four points on the board going into their final group game.

Hosts Australia hand Canada early exit

Heading into the final round of fixtures in Group B, Canada, Australia and Nigeria were battling for two spots to book their place in the last-16.

Canada and Nigeria both had four points with Australia holding on to three points after their win over Ireland.

Nigeria knew a point was enough to guarantee their route through and they played out a goalless draw with Ireland to finish second.

But Canada, who reached the quarter-finals when hosting in 2015 and the round of 16 in 2019, crumbled under the pressure of playing hosts Australia.

Australia, who had star Sam Kerr back on the bench, were 2-0 ahead on 39 minutes courtesy of a brace from Real Madrid's Hayley Raso.

With Canada chasing the game, Australia were able to pick them off on the counter as Manchester City's Mary Fowler, who had a goal ruled out by VAR in the first half, and Arsenal's Stephanie Catley got their names on the scoresheet to seal an emphatic 4-0 win.

The Matilda's finished top of the standings and will play in the last-16 for the fifth successive World Cup campaign, while Canada were consigned to third place.

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