Ford Football Ferns narrowly defeated by Chile in behind closed doors game

The Ford Football Ferns put in a much improved performance this morning against Chile at Quilín Complex in Santiago, narrowly defeated 2-1 after the South Americans scored a last minute winner. 

The match was played behind closed doors at the request of the home team. 

Head coach Jitka Klimková made six changes to her line-up from the team that started against La Roja Femenina in Sunday morning’s defeat.  

Anna Leat, Grace Neville, Kate Taylor, Annalie Longo, Grace Jale and Milly Clegg replaced Vic Esson, CJ Bott, Katie Bowen, Gabi Rennie, Paige Satchell and the suspended Hannah Wilkinson. 

Betsy Hassett retained her place in midfield to earn her 150th cap for the team, just the third player to reach that milestone after Ria Percival and Ali Riley. 

Chile were unchanged from the team that defeated the Ferns three days earlier. 

The Ferns started brightly and enjoyed the better of the first half, carving out several good chances. 

The best opportunity fell to Milly Clegg in the 23rd minute with the forward put through on goal after some neat combination play, put but she couldn’t find the net leaving the game goalless at the break. 

Despite some good possession from the Ferns, it was Chile who opened the scoring in the 56th minute through Yanara Aedo. 

Kate Taylor put in a great tackle to deny a chance on goal but the ball rebounded to the Colo Colo forward for a good finish into the bottom corner from just outside the box. 

The Ferns continued to create chances and in the 81st minute won a penalty, which Betsy Hassett stepped up to take. 

Her initial shot was blocked by Lyon’s Christiane Endler in goal but Hassett was fastest to react to the rebound to score her 15th goal for the Ferns in her 150th game and bring it level. 

A few moments later Gabi Rennie had to chance to win it after a Milly Clegg cross found her on the edge of the six-yard box but her shot went over the bar after pressure from an Chilean defender. 

Unfortunately the forward was injured in the process leaving the Ferns to close out the final moments of the game with 10 players. 

Deep into injury time, with the game looking likely to end as a draw, Chile exploited their player advantage to find midfielder Karen Araya who scored from long range to win it. 

Chile – 2 (Yanara Aedo 56′, Karen Araya 90+4′)
Ford Football Ferns – 1 (Betsy Hassett 81’)

Anna Leat, Grace Neville, Ali Riley (Paige Satchell 78’), Rebekah Stott (Michaela Foster 78’), Kate Taylor, Betsy Hassett, Annalie Longo (Ally Green 45’), Indiah-Paige Riley, Malia Steinmetz (Grace Wisnewski 68’), Milly Clegg, Grace Jale (Gabi Rennie 68’).