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Matildas want to keep their winning run going

Australia's Emily van Egmond says the Matildas need more wins to become a world power
Australia's Emily van Egmond says the Matildas need more wins to become a world power Jeff McIntosh

WINNING friendlies is great, but Australian star Emily van Egmond says the next big challenge for the Matildas is to win silverware.

It has been a watershed year for Alen Stajcic's team, highlighted by its stunning Tournament of Nations success against world powers USA, Japan and Brazil.

That forms part of a six-game win streak for the Matildas, which includes Wednesday night's 3-0 trouncing of China at AAMI Park.

And while there is a second game against the Chinese in Geelong tomorrow, looming large is April's Asian Cup in Jordan and, the following year, the World Cup in France.

The Asian Cup doubles as World Cup qualifiers - the top five teams advance to France - but van Egmond said the star-studded Matildas must aim higher than simply booking a World Cup ticket.

"If you go and win a tournament like that against powerhouses like Japan, then it sets a mark,” van Egmond said.

"China, South Korea, they're all coming up through the ranks, so if you can make a statement in that then I think it puts you in a good stead for the World Cup.”

While the recent run has been fulfilling, van Egmond said her team wanted more.

"The success we've had with the Matildas has been really good and it's really good that we're getting all of this attention,” she said.

"But at the same time we still haven't done anything in a major tournament. It's only really been friendlies. That's OK. You want to win every game, but we want to win that silverware and I think that's our next big challenge.”

The rise of the Matildas coincides with Football Federation Australia readying a bid to host the 2023 women's World Cup and van Egmond said Australia being named as host would be huge for the game and her team.


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