Matildas defender Ellie Carpenter has been forced to limit her social media replies after copping a string of abuse in the wake of Australia’s loss to England in the FIFA Women’s World Cup on Wednesday night.
With scores level at 1-1 after Sam Kerr’s stunning second-half strike, Carpenter’s inability to clear a long ball allowed England striker Lauren Hemp to give her side the lead.
WATCH THE VIDEO ABOVE: England take lead after Carpenter error.
Watch the latest sport on Channel 7 or stream for free on 7plus >>
“Carpenter, she doesn’t deal with this. She doesn’t get her body in front. Or even just look to clear and hook the ball away,” Grace Gill said in commentary for Channel 7.
Fellow commentator David Basheer added: “She’s lost her composure there, Ellie Carpenter.”
The contest was settled when England striker Alessia Russo added a clinical third against a makeshift defensive unit, taking the pressure off Carpenter’s earlier error.
But the Australian remained devastated after the full-time whistle.
Veteran goalkeeper Lydia Williams, who sees herself as the ‘mother of the group’, was quick to embrace the tearful Carpenter.
Sam Kerr’s unseen act wows England captain
New angle of Sam Kerr goal uncovers missed detail
Tameka Yallop and Steph Catley also wrapped their arms around the 23-year-old.
It later emerged Carpenter turned off comments on her personal Instagram due to a flood of abuse, although she had plenty of fans voicing their support.
“Did she stuff up defensively costing a goal? Yes. Does she deserve abuse on her social media platform or at all? No. I’ll never understand how people truly think that is okay,” one fan said on Twitter
“I’m prepared to fight every person being horrible to Ellie Carpenter,” another said.
“Twitter I’m hoping with the energy we have going y’all can send Ellie Carpenter some love,” another added.
Carpenter was distraught on the bench after the final whistle. Credit: FIFA via Getty Images
The Matildas had never previously made the semi-finals of a Women’s World Cup, and their journey to the final four came after facing elimination in the group stage.
They will now dust themselves off for a clash with Sweden on Saturday night in Brisbane to decide third place, live and free from 5.30pm AEST on Seven and 7plus.
England delighted in claiming third place in 2015 but after losing to Sweden four years later, then-coach Phil Neville declared it a “nonsense game”.
The Matildas have made it clear they consider the Sweden clash a genuine bronze-medal match.
“I know we’re emotional, but we have no time to dwell on this one. We have a bronze-medal game to play. We need to be ready,” coach Tony Gustavsson said after the match.
“(Sweden) have 24 hours on us in terms of recovery, which might play a massive part of that game.
“But tonight also, we had 30 minutes more in the legs (than England) for extra-time last game – but that didn’t show in the second half of this game.
“So we’re tough. We’re fit. We dig deep. We have the support from the fans.”
– With AAP