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Courage at the Women’s World Cup: USWNT make the quarter finals, Brazil and Canada bow out

Four Courage players are still in the running to make it to the final of the Women’s World Cup.

Soccer: Women’s World Cup-Spain at USA Michael Chow-USA TODAY Sports

The USWNT are the only team remaining at the Women’s World Cup with North Carolina Courage players within in their roster. After a tough 2-1 win against Spain, Abby Dahlkemper, Crystal Dunn, Sam Mewis and Jessica McDonald will now play in the quarter final against France on Friday afternoon.

Unfortunately for Debinha with Brazil and Stephanie Labbé with Canada, their World Cup campaigns ended this week. Brazil lost in extra time to the hosts, France, while Canada lost out to Sweden in normal time.

Spain 1 - 2 USA

The USWNT had the hardest game they have come across at the World Cup on Monday afternoon. Spain gave them everything they had and then some, and had it not been for Megan Rapinoe’s calmness from the penalty spot, the USWNT may have gone out early at the World Cup. Of the four Courage players involved with the USWNT, Dahlkemper, Dunn and Mewis started again for their national team while Jessica McDonald stayed on the bench.

Crystal Dunn probably had the worst game of the three who started as Spain repeatedly targeted her side of the field. She was not at fault for Spain’s goal (that blame falls on Alyssa Naeher and Becky Sauerbrunn) but she was genuinely tested for the first time at this tournament. Dahlkemper was one of the few to come out of this match with high marks while Mewis, though positive in her play, could not affect the game as much as she has in previous games. None of that matters now though as the team managed to get by Spain and will now prepare for their date with France.

France 2 - 1 Brazil (AET)

Debinha featured once again for Brazil throughout the game and was unfortunate to lose against France in extra time. France goals came from balls into the box while Brazil’s only goal of the game came through Debinha’s enterprise. Debinha put in a cross into the ball in the 63rd minute which was parried right into Thaisa’s path, whereby the midfielder made no mistake from about eight yards out.

Debinha was probably Brazil’s best attacker throughout the game but unfortunately could not help her team get the winning goal. Debinha herself was also unable to get on the score sheet throughout the tournament but her play will have pleased any Courage fan watching as it was the same form she has shown in the National Women’s Soccer League.

Sweden 1 - 0 Canada

Canada missed a penalty in the second half that could have given them a chance to stay in this game but ultimately, went out of the World Cup thanks to a goal by Stina Blackstenius. Stephanie Labbé played the entire match, just as she has for all of Canada’s games at the World Cup but she could not stop Blackstenius from scoring in the 55th minute.

Labbé was very solid for Canada and made some good saves throughout the game but could do nothing to stop Sweden from advancing at their expense to their quarter finals.