COVENTRY: Great Britain’s women footballers conceded goals for the first time in these Olympic Games – and they proved decisive as Hope Powell’s Team GB lost their quarter-final 2-0 to surprise outsiders Canada.
Team GB appeared to run out of steam so the Canadians will go on to face Olympic champions United States in Manchester in Monday’s semi-finals.
This was a disappointing end to the first finals appearance by Hope Powell’s team as, after winning all three games in the group stage, they succumbed to first-half goals from Jonelle Filigno and Christine Sinclair.
Filigno had already been denied once by Karen Bardsley when she met an 11th-minute corner with a decisive half-volley. This was the first time Team GB had conceded during the competition and, after Alex Scott had failed to capitalise on Karen Carney’s superb cross, Bardsley was soon picking the ball out of her net again after a Sinclair free-kick.
With the impressive Filigno a constant threat Great Britain – missing injured star forward Kelly Smith – could never settle into any sort of rhythm. Even three-goal top-scoring full-back Stephanie Houghton was unable to threaten, with her forays forward constantly checked by a well-organised Canada side.
In a second half lacking in goalmouth action, Fara Williams wriggled her way to the byline and picked out makeshift striker Jill Scott with a cross but the Everton midfielder was unable to get enough power into her header to trouble Erin McLeod.
Team GB left the pitch to a standing ovation and the hope that their efforts at London 2012 will leave a legacy of encouragement and enhanced interest.
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