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Women’s World Cup Quarterfinals set as eight teams aim for trophy

The Women’s World Cup quarterfinals are set and will kick off on Thursday night in Le Havre. The Women’s World Cup quarterfinals will conclude on Saturday with the semifinals on tap Tuesday, July 2nd.

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The women’s tournament has been whittled from 24 teams down to eight with some of the world’s best teams ready to battle it out in the elite eight.

Women’s World Cup quarterfinals: Norway vs. England

Norway meet England in the first of the four quarterfinal matches. The two sides will play in Le Havre on Thursday night. The winner will meet either France or the United States in the semifinals.

England have won all four matches at the Women’s World Cup allowing a mere one goal. That goal came against Scotland in their first match of the tournament. Since then, Phil Neville’s squad has played 270 minutes without giving up a goal.

Ellen White has been red-hot in front of goal scoring four times.

Norway could go into Thursday night fatigued after playing 120 minutes of football against Australia in the round of 16. It took Norway penalties to progress against the Matildas. Norway finished second in Group A behind France before playing Australia in the last round.

Women’s World Cup quarterfinals: France vs. The United States

It is the match everyone wanted to see as the final. Unfortunately, we get it in the quarterfinals.

The US were ruthless in the group stage scoring 18 goals and keeping two clean sheets. They were not challenged by their three opponents and it showed in their 2-1 win over Spain in the round of 16. The US needed two penalties to progress and were pushed the entire way.

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Meanwhile, Alex Morgan, who scored five goals against Thailand, has gone cold in front of goal.

France’s team is predominantly made up of world-class players who play for Lyon. The French side is one of the best in the world and the chemistry the players have allows them to excel at the international level.

Centre-back Wendi Renard is 6ft 2in and her presence could be enough to marshal Morgan or Carli Lloyd in the French 18-yard box.

Women’s World Cup quarterfinals: Germany vs. Sweden

Germany and Sweden will meet on Saturday in Rennes. The Germans are built on defence and their high-pressing tactics allow them to win the ball and counter quickly. Germany have not allowed a goal in four matches at the Women’s World Cup while scoring nine times.

Sweden just survived the round of 16 against Canada and needed goalkeeper Hedvig Lindahl to make a crucial penalty save in the second half to preserve their lead.

Germany’s defence has been strong and Sweden will struggle to break down their European foes.

Women’s World Cup quarterfinals: Italy vs. The Netherlands

Two dark horses at this year’s Women’s World Cup meet in Valenciennes on Saturday. The Netherlands just got past Japan courtesy of an 89th-minute penalty in the round of 16. Meanwhile, Italy defeated China 2-0.

The Italians have surprised everyone with their strong defending and timely goal scoring. Italy have allowed just two scores while tallying nine of their own.

The Netherlands are the reigning European Championship winners. They too have surprised a few onlookers and continue to get late goals to win matches.

Against New Zealand, in the group stage, they got a second-half stoppage-time goal. Their penalty against Japan was deserved but cruelly on the 2011 Women’s World Cup winners. Will they need another late winner against Italy?

Their all-European quarterfinal with Italy will be a fantastic game of two teams that love to attack.