Spain progress to knockouts after win over Zambia


Jennifer Hermoso of Spain (L) dribbles Margaret Belemu of Zambia (R) during the FIFA Women's World Cup Australia & New Zealand 2023 Group C match between Spain and Zambia at Eden Park on July 26, 2023 in Auckland, New Zealand.

Jenni Hermoso and Alba Redondo scored twice as Spain underlined their credentials as potential Fifa Women’s World Cup winners by thrashing Zambia to progress to the last 16 with a game to spare.

The Spanish opened their Group C campaign with a comfortable 3-0 win against Costa Rica last week, having a total of 46 shots on goal.

They picked up where they left off against Zambia, racing into a ninth-minute lead when Teresa Abelleira drove in a stunning strike from distance.

Hermoso doubled the lead just four minutes later, heading home a cross on her 100th appearance for her country.

Redondo then rounded the goalkeeper in the second half before Hermoso scored her 50th international goal late on after a lengthy video assistant referee check.

Hermoso almost had a hat-trick soon after but her shot was pushed on to the crossbar, but Spain got their fifth when Redondo drove home in the final few minutes.

The victory also ensured Japan – who beat Costa Rica 2-0 earlier on Thursday – also progress and the two sides will meet in a battle for first place on Monday, 31 July (08:00 BST).

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