Spoils shared between CommBank Matildas in scintillating draw

The spoils were shared tonight as the Commonwealth Bank Matildas and Brazil drew 2-2 at CommBank Stadium in Parramatta in front of 12,087 fans.

Goals to Clare Polkinghorne and Sam Kerr were cancelled out by Erika and Debinha in what was yet another pulsating contest between these great rivals.

With the inclusion of Marta and Debinha among others, Brazil started more brightly of the two sides.

However, it was the Matildas who had the best early chances. Caitlin Foord was ready to make her mark on the game but unable to get either of her efforts into the back of the net.

The visitors continued to ask questions of the Australian defence but ultimately, an Australian defender would ask the right question down the other end.

Just like Saturday, it was Clare Polkinghorne who opened the scoring. And just like Saturday, the defender was able to strike from close range. Brazil failed to clear a corner properly as well as the recycled ball in from Kyra Cooney-Cross which led to Australia scoring.  

While the Matildas had the advantage on the score sheet it was Brazil who had the ascendency on the field with wave after wave of attacking chances.

Lydia Williams was up to the task, denying Kerolin while the woodwork helped keep Adriana’s efforts out of the back of the net.

The Matildas defence continued to be pushed and probed by the Brazilians with the pressure mounting, but the away side could not find the back of the net. The Commonwealth Bank Matildas went into the halftime break ahead.

The introduction of Kyah Simon and Clare Wheeler at halftime saw an injection of fresh legs. And both players got a touch in the build-up to the Matildas second goal. Passes between Wheeler,  Catley and Fowler in the defensive saw the latter unleash Ellie Carpenter on the wing.

A one-two with Kyah Simon saw the ball end up at the edge of the box before Carpenter played through Kerr who turned and shot.

It was the captain’s 49th goal for her country.

But Brazil was not done attacking and came hard at the Australian defence. They finally found their goal through centre-back Erika. The tall defender was able to head home unchallenged off a set piece in the 64th minute.

Less than 10 minutes later, the scores were level. This time Debinha was on the end of it. The initial cross-cum-shot forced Williams into a diving, pawing save. But Debinha flew through the air to head home the follow-up – and crash into the post.

Both teams were desperate to grab a winner, urged on by their respective fans. While it was a friendly in name, the tension was palpable.

While both sides mustered a few chances, including Marta coming close with the final kick of the game, 2-2 was the final scoreline.