Australia looks to live up to expectations.

Is Monday the day we see the return of Sam Kerr? That is the question. So far in this tournament, the co-host country Australia has been without its top star — and has barely held on, advancing with a big victory in a must-win group stage match over Canada. Kerr suggested she was game-ready on Sunday, telling reporters: “I’m really excited. I will play.” After New Zealand exited the World Cup in the group stage, Australia has to win to keep at least one host country in contention.

With Kerr expected to return to the lineup, the Matildas will be looking to show the full breadth of their potential. The Australians will need Kerr’s striking power — Denmark held England to a single goal, 1-0, in the Danes’ lone loss of the group stage.

In 2019, Australia was ousted in the round of 16 by Norway in a penalty shootout. Denmark hasn’t qualified for a World Cup since 2007, and is here to make the most of it.

“This is do or die now,” said Australia goaltender Mackenzie Arnold.

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