(Reuters) – Australia captain Sam Kerr says their 3-2 win over Brazil at the women’s World Cup on Thursday was the perfect response to critics who had written them off after their opening defeat by Italy.
The victory in Montpellier saw Australia become the second team in women’s World Cup history to win a match from being at least two goals down, after Sweden beat Germany 3-2 in 1995.
The Matildas’ delight was in stark contrast to the gloom cast over the side after their 2-1 loss to Italy in Valenciennes on Sunday, a defeat that prompted a wave of criticism back home.
Kerr said that backlash only fired them up.
“There was a lot of critics talking about us but we’re back so suck on that one,” Kerr said after their win over Brazil. “We don’t listen to the haters.
“Social media gives people a platform to say whatever they want, so it was good to kind of send a message back home and send a message to the rest of the world.
“One game was not going to derail our World Cup hopes – and that’s why it was so frustrating for us because instead of the media being ‘we can turn this around’, it turned negative on us and it only fuelled us, so thank you.”
The win saw Australia join Brazil and Italy on three points in Group C. The Italians face Jamaica in Reims later on Friday.
Kerr said Australia were thrilled to beat a quality side like Brazil but would now focus on their final group match against Jamaica next Tuesday in Grenoble.
“Brazil’s one of the best teams in the world, they’ve got the best player probably ever in the history of the game (in Marta),” she said.
“So if people don’t keep watching the Aussies, we’ll come get you like we did then.
“(But) we’ve got to focus on Jamaica first, we’re not going get too far ahead of ourselves.”
(Reporting by Greg Stutchbury in Welllington; Editing by Peter Rutherford)