Team Canada has defeated Sweden in the final to take home the gold medal in women’s soccer at the Tokyo Olympics.
The game was decided in penalty kicks after two periods of extra time with the game tied 1-1. Julia Grosso scored the game-winner for Canada. The two teams traded points back and forth, then the shoot-out went into sudden death.
Sweden started strong in the first half, putting pressure on Canada from the beginning of the game and spending most of their time on the Canadian side of the field.
Their aggression in the first half paid off, with a goal from Stina Blackstenius 34 minutes in, leaving Sweden ahead at halftime.
However, in the second half, a Swedish player fouled Canadian captain Christine Sinclair, resulting in a penalty kick for Canada. Jessie Fleming was successful, and tied the game at 67 minutes in.
Fleming had earlier in the tournament also scored the penalty kick that won the semifinal game for Canada against the U.S.
Canada brought the heat after that goal, pushing hard against the Swedish women, though they didn’t score again in the second half. The game went into extra time with the teams tied up 1-1.
Both teams looked scrappy in the first period of extra time and pushed hard for the goal, though neither was successful.
Sweden was stronger in the second period of extra time, with several near-misses on the Canadian net. The game was still tied however, and went to penalty kicks.
In the shootout, Canadian goalkeeper Stephanie Labbe made several impressive saves, as the teams traded shots but came up tied after five kicks each. So, it went to sudden death, and Labbe made a huge save, leaving Grosso the chance to win the game for Canada.
The Canadian women have never made it to an Olympic soccer final before. They won bronze in Rio and in London, and had made it their mission to change the colour of their medal this Olympics. They defeated the U.S. in the semifinals to make it to the gold medal match.
Sweden didn’t change the colour of their medal this Olympics: they also won silver in Rio in 2016.