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22nd-Jun-2015

Germany, China advance to quarter-finals at Women’s World Cup

By Agency

Germany and China booked the first two spots in the quarter-finals of the Women`s World Cupon Saturday with confident wins over Sweden and Cameroon.
Germany, champions in 2003 and 2007, demolished Sweden 4-1 in Ottawa, while China won 1-0 in Edmonton to send the last African challenger Cameroon out of the tournament.
Forwards Celia Sasic and Anja Mittag both scored their fifth goals of the tournament as the top-ranked Germans closed down their fifth-ranked European rivals in scorching conditions at Lansdowne Stadium.
Sasic scored twice with Mittag and Dzsenifer Marozsan also on target to put the favourites through to the last eight for the seventh time in as many editions of the tournament.
Germany coach Silvia Neid described the victory as "a very important game, maybe a key match" in the tournament.
"We haven`t had games of this quality in the World Cup apart from Norway," said Neid, whose group had included minnows Ivory Coast and Thailand.
Germany, who were shocked in the quarter-finals of the 2011 World Cup at home, next play either France or South Korea, who clash in Montreal on Sunday, for a place in the semi-finals.
The 30-year-old Mittag set Germany on their way in the 24th minute with a solo run following a poor pass in the Swedish defence for her fifth goal in four matches.
And 12 minutes later Sasic got her first when she slotted in a contentious penalty awarded for a foul on Mittag inside the box by her former FC Rosengard teammate Amanda Ilestedt.
Sofia Jakobsson nearly pulled one back for the Swedes seconds before half-time but could not manage to keep her header down.
Sasic grabbed her second on 78 minutes when her diving header gave her a fifth goal of the tournament after Simone Laudehr`s initial effort had come back off the post.
Defender Linda Sembrant got one back for the Swedes with eight minutes to go, but Marozsan connected with a sliding shot that went over a diving Lindahl two minutes from time.While Germany and Sweden battled in temperatures reaching 38 degrees Celsius (100 Farenheit), it was raining in Edmonton, where Wang Shanshan`s first half goal was enough to set up a meeting with either the United States or Colombia for a place in the semi-finals.
China coach Hao Wei had a touchline ban and was forced to watch the game from the stands in Edmonton`s Commonwealth Stadium.
But his side closed down the game early when Wang Shanshan got the opener after 12 minutes when she picked up pass from Li Dongna who did well to control a Wang Lisi corner.
Despite a spirited challenge by the 53rd-ranked African side, the 16th-ranked Chinese held on to make it through to the last eight for the sixth time.
It was her second goal of the tournament for the 25-year-old Wang, who missed a golden chance for a second as she went wide on 60 minutes when alone on front of goal.
Substitute Henriette Akaba missed a chance to level for Cameroon three minutes from time but fired wide.
Cameroon were just the second African side to make it out of the group stage after Nigeria in 1999.
It is China`s sixth time reaching the quarter-finals. They failed to qualify for the 2011 tournament.