WELLINGTON, NEW ZEALAND - JULY 25: Grace Jale of New Zealand reacts after a missed chance during the FIFA Women's World Cup Australia & New Zealand 2023 Group A match between New Zealand and Philippines at Wellington Regional Stadium on July 25, 2023 in Wellington, New Zealand. (Photo by Catherine Ivill/Getty Images)

FIFAWWC Match Day Six - Host nation rocked by shock defeat

Keep up to date with Edge of the Crowd's coverage of the FIFA Women’s World Cup, as a shock result highlighted an action-packed Day Six at the FIFA Women's World Cup. How did it all unfold? Read on to find out.

Catch up on our previous wrap-up here:

Colombia v South Korea

The final fixture of matchday one took place in Sydney with Colombia delivering a 2-0 defeat of South Korea. After the first goal - a penalty from veteran Catalina Usme in the 30th minute -, Colombia didn't allow their opponents a sniff. It appeared like nothing was going to come together for South Korea, save for a half-decent chance at the end of the first half.

Both teams had their chances as the Tigresses of Asia looked the more dominating side within the first 15 minutes, though their shots were stopped by the opposition goalkeeper. Attacking forays forward spurred Las Chicas Superpoderosas on as they were awarded a penalty, and from there, looked the more likely team to score on the afternoon.

Not even 10 minutes later, Colombia had its second. It was a goal that was equal part brilliance from Linda Caicedo - working her way from the middle into attack with her run and dribbling skills to fire off a shot from outside the box - and equal part shoddy from Yoon Young-geul - who, despite the ball sailing straight in her direction, fluffed the chance with semi-stretched hands above, with a deflection sending the ball into behind the keeper and into the back of the net.

This result is positive for Colombia in the sense that results like these (against teams with higher rankings) will be crucial to getting out of the group stage. For South Korea however, the defence will need to be tighter going forward to have any chance at scraping results in its favour and will hope to bounce back against Morocco on matchday two.

PLAYER OF THE MATCH: LINDA CAICEDO (COL). The Colombian midfielder was the most dominating player on her team and in the game, regularly looking at creating chances to score - whether herself (as she did) or assisting teammates. Coming back from a cancer diagnosis three years ago, at her debut Women's World Cup, Caicedo showed what she can bring to the main stage.

New Zealand v Philippines

Football can be a cruel game. One day you can be cock of the walk, the next you’re a feather duster. And co-hosts New Zealand know that better than anybody after the team's 1-0 defeat to the Philippines. 

After New Zealand's shock victory over Norway on the opening night of the competition, it seemed the draw had opened right up for the co-hosts. But, this misstep sees the Football Ferns mired in a scrap for knockout round qualification from Group A. The home nation spurned chance after chance in front of goal and only have their own profligacy to blame.

For the Philippines, it was pure ecstasy. Widely expected to struggle in this fixture, Alen Stajcic’s charges vowed to spoil the Football Ferns' party and write some of their own history pre-match, and that is exactly what they did. 

The history-making moment came in the 24th minute when Philippines number 7 Sarina Bolden headed home a goal following a free kick. In truth, it was a weak piece of goalkeeping by New Zealand goalie Victoria Esson.

Try as they might, the Football Ferns just couldn’t find their way onto the scoresheet. They did find the back of the net once, but matchday one hero Hannah Wilkinson was adjudged offside by VAR.

New Zealand faces Switzerland next in a must-win match at Dunedin on Sunday night, whilst the Philippines take on Norway at Eden Park with a genuine chance to qualify for the Round of 16.

PLAYER OF THE MATCH: OLIVIA DAVIES McDANIEL (PHI). Philippines goalkeeper was certainly helped by some wayward New Zealand finishing but produced some good saves including a match-winning one in injury time of the second half as the hosts laid siege to the Philippines goal.

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Switzerland vs Norway

A 0-0 draw in this game doesn’t quite see Norway booking its flights home, but the side is definitely looking at prices, whilst Switzerland will be feeling very confident about playing some knockout football, despite having to play the hosts in the final group stage match. 

The big question following this game is what was the Norwegian gaffer thinking about resting a bunch of her stars for this clash? Ada Hegerberg was a late withdrawal and there are question marks over her fitness for the rest of the tournament. Caroline Graham Hansen only appeared from the bench, as did Ingrid Engen. 

The match itself was somewhat of a non-event, with defence certainly outplaying attack on both sides, leading to a match that won't live long in the memories of those that watched it, live or otherwise.

Norway had the best of the chances, unsurprisingly when they unleashed Caroline Graham Hansen in the second half, but just couldn’t get past Switzerland's stopper Gaëlle Thalmann.

Although qualification from the group is wide open, smart money is not on Norway anymore. Coach Hege Riise is going to need to pull a rabbit out of a hat to see her team take part after the group stage. 

PLAYER OF THE MATCH: Gaëlle Thalmann (SUI). The Swiss stopper was solid if unspectacular and played her role perfectly in the conservative Swiss game plan.

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