Australia down Denmark to reach World Cup quarters


Co-hosts Australia welcomed captain Sam Kerr to the fray for the first time in the tournament as they beat Denmark 2-0 to reach the quarter-finals of the FIFA Women's World Cup on Monday.

Forwards Caitlin Foord and Hayley Raso scored the goals either side of halftime before Kerr, who has been absent with a calf injury, came on as a 78th-minute substitute to the biggest roar of the night from the crowd of 75,784 at Stadium Australia in Sydney.

Australia, who have reached the last eight at three previous World Cups but never gone further, move on to meet either France or Morocco in Brisbane on Saturday with a place in the semi-finals on the line.

"We were under a lot of pressure that first half but we didn't get rattled," said Australia coach Tony Gustavsson.

"The team is very mature playing tournament football and can find a way to get it done."

Denmark dominated the early exchanges with Pernille Harder looking particularly dangerous but faded as the game went on with their first World Cup campaign since 2007 destined to end in the last 16.

"The match today was decided by Australia's effectiveness in front of goal and our lack of efficiency in that area," said Denmark coach Lars Sondergaard.

"They probably deserved to win but I'm very proud of the Danish team. They fought hard, they played with heart."

More from Sports