Sam Kerr is known for her ability to score goals. But the dynamic forward has not been able find the back of the net on one stage: the Women’s World Cup.
With 31 goals in 77 games for Australia, none had come in the World Cup. That changed Sunday, as Kerr picked up her 32nd goal in her 78th game.
But the result was a disappointing one, as Italy pulled off the upset of Australia 2-1 to open Group C action in Valenciennes, France.
How did Kerr score her goal? After Italy’s Sara Gama was called for a yellow card for pulling down Kerr in the box, Kerr took advantage by kicking in the rebound in the 22nd minute once her penalty kick was blocked by Italy goalie Laura Giuliani.
This marks Kerr’s third World Cup after making her debut on the big stage in 2009 at age 15.
Kerr is now 25 and plays professionally in the United States (for the National Women’s Soccer League’s Chicago Red Stars) and in Australia (for the W-League’s Perth Glory). She is the all-time leading scorer in both leagues.
Next up for Australia is its second match of the group stage, which comes against Brazil on Thursday at noon EST. Brazil begins its World Cup run Sunday at 9:30 a.m. against Jamaica.