Skip to main content
Published 08 August 2023 5 min read
England Women's Senior Team

Report: England 2-1 Colombia

Written by:

Frank Smith and James Reid

  • L. Hemp (51′)
  • A. Russo (63′)
FIFA Women's World Cup Australia and New Zealand 2023 Quarter-finals
Saturday 12 August, 11:30 AM Accor Stadium
2 1
HT: 1 - 1
  • L. Santos (44′)

Goals from Lauren Hemp and Alessia Russo help England book a semi-final spot against Australia at the 2023 FIFA Women's World Cup

12 Aug 2023 7:09

Highlights: England 2-1 Colombia

See the best of the action from Australia as the Lionesses reach the World Cup semi-final

England v Colombia
FIFA Women's World Cup
11.30am BST, Saturday 12 August 2023
Stadium Australia, Sydney, Australia

Mary Earps believes the best is yet to come from England as they head into their 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup quarter-final with Colombia.

The Lionesses needed penalties to progress from the round of 16 tie with Nigeria and were pushed all the way in the 1-0 wins over Haiti and Denmark in the group stages.

The emphatic 6-1 victory over China showed what the players are capable of and Earps believes England can still get better in this tournament.

Earps said: “I really believe the best is yet to come. I think there's so much talent in the group and so many more levels that we can reach. I truly believe that. 

“There's an incredible wealth of talent and experience. This comes not only from experiences we've had together as an international team but also from the teams we play for at the club level and all the different fixtures we've experienced over the years, particularly over the last 12 to 24 months.

“When you consider the Champions Leagues, titles, cups, and everything else that the team has individually collected amongst the players, it's clear how accomplished we are. I think it's an exciting time to be an England player. 

“However, we have to earn that right every day. We're constantly looking to improve, drive performance, and uphold our standards. 

“That's the best part about it. While we're happy and grateful to be here, we're not satisfied. We're not done. There are still more levels we aim to reach.”

Mary and the rest of the England squad have been working hard in Australia
Mary and the rest of the England squad have been working hard in Australia

Colombia, who are ranked 25th in the world, have been one of the standout teams in the tournament so far.

As well as defeating Korea Republic 2-0 and Morocco 1-0 in the group stages, Colombia beat the team ranked number two in the world, Germany, on their way to topping Group H.

That was followed by a 1-0 round of 16 win over Jamaica and head coach Sarina Wiegman is well aware of the threat posed by the South Americans.

Wiegman said: “Columbia have done very well. They're a strong team, they're very together and we’ve seen they're physical and strong with some powerful players.

“I think they want to get the ball to their attacking players because they're unpredictable and good.”

She continued: “We always prepare for every team. We look at the strengths and the weaknesses of the team and also how they show [up on the day].

“We talk through everything and we are prepared. Of course, we also see that there's a big crowd from Colombia, so we're prepared for that.”

Wiegman confirmed that Lauren James aside, with the forward currently serving a two-match ban, England will have a whole squad to choose from against Colombia.

She added: “We have a squad of 23. We have faced a player missing before [in Keira Walsh], she came back, and now we miss another player.

“We know how we want to feel in that position. So it's just a team effort, and we support each other and fill in places that become free.”

England have utilised different formations during the tournament, something Earps was asked about in the pre-match press conference.

She said: “At this level, tactics and formations are really important. It's about fine margins when you're winning games. But for me personally, I just want to be as well-versed as possible, making sure I'm doing my job for the team.

“Communication is a huge part of that. It's about understanding what Sarina wants and trying to ensure that we're implementing the game plan as best as we possibly can. But also, we're finding solutions as a group.

“Naturally, at this level in this tournament, you see how high the quality is and how competitive it is. Teams pose very different problems, and you can't prepare for every single problem a team can pose.

“So, I think it's important that as a group, we find a way to push through and solve that in the moment.”

Key Stats: England v Colombia

- England are playing in the quarter-final of the FIFA Women's World Cup for the sixth time. They progressed from their most recent two appearances at that stage after failing to qualify for the semi-finals in their first three.

- Colombia have reached the quarter-final of the FIFA Women’s World Cup for the very first time and will be looking to become just the second South American side to reach the final four after Brazil (1999 & 2007).

- England have failed to win their last three games in the knockout stage of the FIFA Women’s World Cup (D1 L2) after losing only one of the previous seven (W5 D1).

- Seventy-five per cent of Colombia’s overall wins at the FIFA Women’s World Cup have come at this edition (3/4). Indeed, prior to the 2023 tournament, Colombia had won just one of their seven games in the competition (2011 & 2015 – D2 L4).

- England failed to score in their last game, against Nigeria (0-0), ending their record run of 16 games with at least one goal in the FIFA Women’s World Cup. They have never failed to score in consecutive games in the competition.

- England have had 71 separate sequences of 10+ passes at this year’s FIFA Women’s World Cup, more than any other side (before the start of the quarter-finals). Meanwhile, Colombia’s total of just seven is the lowest of the eight remaining sides in the competition, despite enjoying more possession than their opponents in three of their four games so far.

 Alex Greenwood, Jordan Nobbs and Lucy Bronze were all part of the squad when England Women last played Colombia
Alex Greenwood, Jordan Nobbs and Lucy Bronze were all part of the squad when England Women last played Colombia

- England will be without the suspended Lauren James for this game following her red card against Nigeria. Only France’s Kadidiatou Diani (4 goals, 3 assists) has been involved in more goals than James (3 goals, 3 assists) at this year’s FIFA Women’s World Cup heading into the quarter-finals.

- The average length of Colombia’s games at the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup has been 106 minutes & 10 seconds. Excluding extra-time, only Germany (17 mins & 8 secs) and Zambia (16 mins & 29 secs) have averaged more added time (first and second half combined) than Colombia (16 mins & 10 secs) heading into the quarter-finals.

- Catalina Usme, who scored the winning goal against Jamaica in the round of 16 stage, is now the outright top goalscorer for Colombia in the FIFA Women’s World Cup with three goals. She has attempted (66) and completed (38) more passes ending in the final third than any other Colombian player in the competition this year.

- This is the furthest Colombia have progressed at a FIFA Women’s World Cup tournament, having been eliminated at the Last 16 stage in 2015 on the only other previous occasion they’ve reached the knockout stages.

- Colombia have won all four of their games at the FIFA Women’s World Cup (all time) when they’ve opened the scoring, while England remain unbeaten when scoring first (P18 W16 D2).

- Colombia are winless at the FIFA Women’s World Cup (all time) when conceding first (P6 D1 L5) while England have come back to win just two of their 10 such matches when conceding first (D1 L7).

- The Lionesses have kept seven clean sheets across their last 10 FIFA Women’s World Cup games. Indeed, since the start of the 2019 tournament, no side has kept more shutouts in the competition than England.

 England's starting line-up against Colombia in 2015
England's starting line-up against Colombia in 2015

Colombia in profile

Las Chicas Superpoderosas (The PowerPuff Girls)
Coach: Nelson Abadia
Captain: Catalina Usme
Last encounter: England 2-1 Colombia, 17 June 2015, Olympic Stadium, Montreal



This will be just the second meeting between England and Colombia in any competition, with the previous encounter also taking place at the FIFA Women’s World Cup. 

Goals from Karen Carney and Fara Williams earned the Lionesses a 2-1 win in their final group game back in 2015.

Jordan Nobbs is the only member of the current squad who started that match, whilst Lucy Bronze was also in the bench, alongside our Lionesses: Down Under connected by EE host and England legend Jill Scott

Colombia have won 50% of their games against European opposition at the FIFA Women’s World Cup (W2 L2), winning their only such game at this edition (2-1 vs Germany).

This will be England’s fourth FIFA Women’s World Cup game against South American opposition, winning each of their previous three (6-1 vs Argentina in 2007, 2-1 vs Colombia in 2015 & 1-0 vs Argentina in 2019).

England Squad News

The squad for the 2023 FIFA Women's World Cup was named on Wednesday 31 May 2023.
Sign up to My England Football for updates on squad announcements in addition to a host of other benefits including discounts and ticket eligibility. 

Ticket Information


How to watch or stream

England's 2023 FIFA Women's World Cup quarter-final will be broadcast in the UK on ITV and ITVX.
 England players celebrate Alessia Russo's match-winning goal
England players celebrate Alessia Russo's match-winning goal

Match Line Up

 England players celebrate Alessia Russo's match-winning goal
England players celebrate Alessia Russo's match-winning goal

Alessia Russo’s second-half strike fired England into the semi-finals of the FIFA Women’s World Cup with a 2-1 victory over Colombia in Sydney.

The Lionesses had fallen behind to Leicy Santos’ opener, but Lauren Hemp equalised just before half-time following a goalkeeping error before Russo grabbed the winner midway through the second period with a ruthless finish from inside the box.

Colombia pushed hard for an equaliser but could not find a way through the Lionesses’ resolute defence, with Sarina Wiegman’s side now set to face co-hosts Australia in the last four on Wednesday.

England started the stronger and fashioned an early sight of goal inside six minutes as Lucy Bronze found Russo in the box, but her effort following Hemp’s initial shot were both well smothered by the Colombian defence.

The pair then combined for England’s next chance, as Hemp delivered a good cross into the box which Russo rose highest to meet but her header was straight at Perez.

Colombia then began to grow into the match, with the talismanic Linda Caicedo leading their offensive efforts.

The Real Madrid forward demonstrated her searing pace by getting in behind Jess Carter before firing her shot high and wide after cutting inside.

But England continued to have the better of early proceedings, Rachel Daly the next to test Perez with a header after Georgia Stanway’s attempted shot found her free at the back post.

Daly then fired over from range just shy of the half-hour mark, but by then Colombia had begun to enjoy more of the game.

 Sarina Wiegman only made the one change to her starting line-up against Colombia
Sarina Wiegman only made the one change to her starting line-up against Colombia

Caicedo saw a shot blocked after some intricate footwork in the box before Colombia found the breakthrough on 44 minutes.

Santos found space to cross on the right-hand side of the box before the ball looped in over the head of Mary Earps to put Colombia one to the good.

But England responded on the stroke of half-time as Hemp poked home from close range, pouncing on the loose ball after Perez had spilled Russo’s initial effort to send the sides in level.

Colombia began the second-half ascendant despite conceding just before the break, with Marya Ramirez hitting the outside of the post after getting free from Carter.

England responded with a flurry of corners, from which both Millie Bright and Daly threatened but were struggling to break down a stubborn Colombian defence from open play.

But the Lionesses found a way to put themselves ahead just after the hour mark, as Russo fired low and hard past Perez from a difficult angle after being slid in behind by Stanway.

 England's two goalscorers celebrating Lauren Hemp's opener
England's two goalscorers celebrating Lauren Hemp's opener

Colombia looked to get themselves back on level terms immediately and came close to doing so as Lorena Bedoya’s shot from range forced Earps to tip the ball over the bar.

But the Lionesses were also pushing for a third goal to seal their place in the semi-final, with Hemp’s pace causing problems as she got in behind but could not find Russo with her cross.

Colombia continued to push for an equaliser, with Santos capitalising on a loose pass to feed Ramirez in the box but she was unable to find another yellow shirt in the box.

Santos then raced in behind but her cross was well-blocked by Bright and found space in the box again a minute later with a quick one-two before her cross was deflected to safety.

Ramirez and Caicedo both fired wide late on but the Lionesses held firm despite eight minutes of additional time to book a place in their third consecutive World Cup semi-final, where they will play co-hosts Australia on Wednesday for a spot in the final. 

Match Line Up

England: 1 Mary Earps (Manchester United), 2 Lucy Bronze (Barcelona), 4 Keira Walsh (Barcelona), 5 Alex Greenwood (Manchester City), 6 Millie Bright (Chelsea), 8 Georgia Stanway (Bayern Munich), 9 Rachel Daly (Aston Villa), 10 Ella Toone (Manchester United), 11 Lauren Hemp (Manchester City), 16 Jess Carter (Chelsea), 23 Alessia Russo (Arsenal) 

Substitutes: 18 Chloe Kelly (Manchester City) for Russo 85’, 19 Bethany England (Tottenham Hotspur) for Hemp 90’ 

Substitutes not used: 3 Niamh Charles (Chelsea), 12 Jordan Nobbs (Aston Villa), 13 Hannah Hampton (Chelsea), 14 Lotte Wubben-Moy (Arsenal), 15 Esme Morgan (Manchester City), 17 Laura Coombs (Manchester City), 20 Katie Zelem (Manchester United), 21 Ellie Roebuck (Manchester City), 22 Katie Robinson (Brighton & Hove Albion) 

Goals: Hemp 45+6’, Russo 62’ 

Head coach: Sarina Wiegman 

Colombia: 1 Catalina Perez, 2 Manuela Vanegas, 3 Daniela Arias, 4 Diana Ospina, 5 Lorena Bedoya, 9 Mayra Ramirez, 10 Leicy Santos, 11 Catalina Usme, 17 Carolina Arias, 18 Linda Caicedo, 19 Jorelyn Carabali 

Substitutes: 15 Ana Guzman for Arias 11’, 13 Natalia Giraldo for Perez, 21 Ivonne Chacon for Ospina 78’ 

Substitutes not used: 6 Daniela Montoya, 7 Maria Reyes, 8 Marcela Restrepo, 12 Sandra Sepulveda, 14 Angela Baron, 16 Lady Andrade, 20 Monica Ramos, 22 Daniela Caracas, 23 Elexa Bahr 

Goals: Santos 44’ 

Head coach: Nelson Abadia