New Zealand had a goal disallowed in the 68th minute.
Philippines will face Norway in their final group match on Sunday.
Philippines achieved a surprising 1-0 victory against New Zealand in the Women’s World Cup. However, coach Alen Stajcic emphasized that they won’t dwell on the celebrations for too long as they need to focus on their final group match against Norway.
Being newcomers to the World Cup, the Philippines suffered a defeat in their opening game against Switzerland and were considered the underdogs against New Zealand, who were ranked 20 places above them.
Despite this, Stajcic had promised to make an impact, and his team delivered with a crucial goal from striker Sarina Bolden in the 24th minute. This victory dampened the excitement from New Zealand’s own unexpected win against former champions Norway a few days earlier.
New Zealand’s chances of securing at least a draw in the match were shattered when Jacqui Hand’s header in the 68th minute was disallowed due to an offside ruling. Despite their desperate efforts during stoppage time, they couldn’t find success in scoring.
“It was very emotional out on the pitch,” said Stajcic, who told reporters that players and staff shed tears.
“To think that we’ve done it in our second match in our first World Cup… the unity and work rate and heart from the team was special. We had some luck but we also earned our luck.”
The players marched together, holding hands, towards the stands where they then bowed before their cheering fans who were waving flags.
However, their celebrations will be brief and concise as they are already focusing on the upcoming match against Norway, the 1995 Football World Cup winners, scheduled to take place in Auckland on Sunday.
“There is no celebration, to be honest. They’ll celebrate until midnight,” said Stajcic.
“Tomorrow it’s back to work. Job’s not done. It’s very important that we switch back into competition mode and think about what we have to do in the last game to try to squeeze out of this group.”
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