England vs. Sweden
|Date & Time||Saturday July 6, 2019, 11:00 AM (EDT)|
The Line: England -150 / Sweden +400 / Draw +275 -- Over/Under: 2.5
England and Sweden meet Saturday in the FIFA Women's World Cup Third Place Game at Allianz Riviera.
England is coming off a heartbreaking loss to the United States but has a chance to earn third place honors in back-to-back World Cups. In the losing effort, England controlled the ball for 53 percent of the match, got four shots on goal and had two key chances to tie or even take the lead in the match late. Ellen White scored what looked to be a goal to tie up the match at 2-2, but VAR reveled that she was offsides by the slimiest of margins. Three Lionesses also couldn’t take advantage of a late penalty kick that probably would have sent the game into extra time and put a ton of pressure on the favorites. England had its chance to slay the dragon and likely isn’t feeling great being forced to settle for this third place contest. However, this is a side that’s playing well overall and has a good chance to leave with a medal if it decides to show up and isn’t hungover from a missed opportunity.
Sweden is another team that came up just short, as it lost to Netherlands in extra time, giving up the only goal of the game in the 99th minute. Sweden now has a chance to settle for third place for the third time in the World Cup. In the loss, Sweden controlled the ball for 44 percent of the match, got four shots on goal and committed 24 fouls. It was the second time in its last four matches where Sweden was shutout and the fifth time in its last 15 matches overall. We knew offense could sometimes be an issue for Blågult and the lack of quality looks has been an issue this tournament when running into decent competition. The ball movement must improve if Sweden is going to finish this tournament off on a high note.
Sweden won a 2018 friendly match 2-0, and a 2017 friendly match resulted in a 0-0 draw.
Motivation can often be the deciding factor in these games, as sure finishing third is better than nothing, but both of these clubs had other things in mind and the letdown can impact the following game. In terms of who should win on paper, it’s hard to bet against England, a team that just gave the US all it could handle and was a couple of breaks away from playing in the championship match. England gets much better looks offensively and has the ability to control the pace against a Sweden side that can be a bit passive.
Assuming England is up for this game, it should leave France with the third place title.