Spain will once again be the favourites on Matchday 2, against Zambia as they registered a 3-0 win over Costa Rica in their Group C opener of the Women’s World Cup 2023. That win was Spain’s biggest ever at a Women’s World Cup, and their 46 shots, 80% possession, and 117 touches in the opponents’ box were all highs for a game at the tournament since at least 2011. Zambia were defeated 5-0 by Japan. The debutants failed to register a single shot in that match and they would like to very much change that.
If Spain wins against Zambia and Japan picks up a point against Costa Rica, La Roja could secure their place in the knockout rounds with a game to spare. The Spanish team enters Wednesday’s contest with significant momentum, having scored 24 goals in their last five matches without conceding any.
Meanwhile, Zambia are at risk of being eliminated from the group stage if they lose to Spain and Japan earns at least a point in their match. Zambia’s defence has been a huge concern. They have conceded at least three goals in each of their last four international matches. They will need to improve their defensive performance to stay competitive against Spain.
FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023: Spain vs Zambia Match Preview
- Match: Spain vs Zambia
- Kickoff time & Date: 26/07/2023 | 1:00 P.M. (IST)
- Venue: Eden Park, New Zealand
- Where to watch: Fancode (India) and DD Sports
FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023: Spain vs Zambia | Team News
Putellas is likely to feature among the substitutes once again. She was out most of the time for an anterior cruciate ligament injury. Vilda expected to name an unchanged lineup for Wednesday’s encounter. As a result, Gonzalez will continue to lead the line for La Roja, and she will be helped by Athenea del Castillo and Salma Paralluelo in the wings.
Meanwhile, Zambia will have to do a change in goal as Catherine Musonda has to serve a one-match suspension after being sent off against Japan. Eunice Sakala will feature in between the posts, and the central defensive pairing of Agness Musase and Lushomo Mweemba will shield her. Barbra Banda will be hoping to offer a greater goal threat when she leads the line on Wednesday.
Spain vs Zambia | Head-to-Head record
Spain have only played one match against an African nation at the Women’s World Cup. They met South Africa and defeated them 3-1 in their tournament opener in 2019. Their last game against an African country in any match was way back in October 2021 when they defeated Morocco 3-0. However, Zambia did beat Germany 3-2 during their Women’s World Cup preparations, also pushing Switzerland all the way in a 3-3 draw.
Spain Women’s possible starting lineup:
Misa; Batlle, Paredes, Ivana, Carmona; Bonmati, Abelleira, Hermoso; Del Castillo, Paralluelo, Gonzalez
Zambia Women’s possible starting lineup:
Sakala; Belemu, Musase, Mweemba, Tembo; S. Banda, Lungu, Katongo; Kundananji, Mapepa, B. Banda