By Lawrence Jude Boisrond Canal
On Aug. 6, an audience of 2,000 fans were in a fervor as the Haitian soccer team participated in the FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup. The match was a historic one for the young ladies who all represented Haiti for the first time in the competition.
The Haitian public was riled up and pushed behind the players from the first to the last minute with a fiery atmosphere with songs, dances and music perfectly reflecting the love Haitians have for football and the team.
Haitian players conceded the first goal of the match from the 12 minutes, following a smoothly-conducted strategy against the Chinese attack. The Haitian coach made tactical changes at the break, switching Etienne between the midfield, while Dumonay was placed on the left flank of the attack.
However, the Haitian players did not lose hope and continued their offensive on the Chinese goal. Changes from their coach paid off and they were able to build their attacks and move more aggressively forward.
While Haiti could look back on their first-half exploits proudly, their second half begun poorly, conceding inside a minute of the restart. Kun Jin found space to play the ball into the danger area and Mengyu Shen made no mistake to punish a sluggish start after the break.
Even though the debutants were not as bright as in the opening period, China failed to kill off the game, leaving the door ajar going into the final stages. Haiti took advantage, putting Peter Bonde’s side under pressure when a foul in the area by Jiaxing Dou allowed Mondesir to slot home from 12 yards.
It so easily could have been a point for the Caribbean side, too. The captain nearly doubled her tally with moments to go, only for Linlin Wang’s goal-saving header to deny her on the line having evaded Huan Xu.
Coverage made possible through the support of Metroplus.