Australia

'I actually wanted more': Praise for Sam Kerr's four-goal performance in Matildas' win against Jamaica

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Jamaica coach Hue Menzies has joined others praising Australian Sam Kerr's virtuoso four-goal game, saying he rates her the best player in the world.

Sam Kerr's virtuoso four-goal game to send Australia into the knockout stage in France has been hailed as as one of the best individual performances at a World Cup.

The Western Australian soared for two first-half headers before settling the contest with two close-range finishes in the second half.

"And I actually wanted more after that, being my selfish self," she said.

Kerr has scored better goals than her fourth effort - when she pounced on a calamitous mis-kick by Jamaica goalkeeper Nicole McClure - but she might not have scored a more important one. 

Australia were leading 3-1 at the time but were in third place in the group and headed for a meeting with world No.2 Germany or tournament favourites and hosts France.

Australia's Sam Kerr celebrates after the final whistle.
Australia's Sam Kerr celebrates after the final whistle.
EMPICS Sport

Instead, the goal bumped the Matildas above Brazil in Group C to set up a round- of-16 clash with Norway.

"At the time I didn't know how important it was," she said of her fourth goal.

"I knew every goal would count and I'm just happy we could get that second spot."

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Matildas advance to knockout round in FIFA Women’s World Cup
Matildas advance to knockout round in FIFA Women’s World Cup

The Australian captain's haul is the latest memorable achievement of an exhilarating World Cup campaign for the Matildas.

Jamaica coach Hue Menzies said he rated Kerr as the best player in the world. 

"It doesn't get any better than that. The kid's just resilient," he said. "I like her attitude, especially in the box. You can't teach that."

"I told her after the match that it's good to sit back and watch her play - I'd pay to watch her."

First came the tragedy of Valenciennes, where they conceded a goal five minutes into stoppage time to lose 2-1 to Italy.

Then, Australia staged the equal-greatest World Cup comeback for a 3-2 win over Brazil dubbed the Miracle of Montpellier.

It doesn't get any better than that...I would pay to come and watch her.

On Wednesday morning (AEST), Kerr produced a four-goal, one-woman show worthy of the world's attention.

After the Brazil match, she let loose with her now iconic cry of "suck on that one".

Kerr, top left, fights for the ball with Jamaica's Khadija Shaw, center, and Jamaica goalkeeper Nicole McClure.
Kerr, top left, fights for the ball with Jamaica's Khadija Shaw, center, and Jamaica goalkeeper Nicole McClure.
AP

In Grenoble, she did her talking on the pitch.

"It's an amazing feeling. I feel pretty honoured just to score at a World Cup ... I guess that's something I will tell my kids when I get older," she said.

"I'm obviously pretty excited I could score and help the team out. I feel relieved."

Matildas coach Ante Milicic could hardly find the words to describe Kerr's big night out.

Australia's Sam Kerr (left) scores her side's fourth goal of the game.
Australia's Sam Kerr (left) scores her side's fourth goal of the game.
EMPICS Sport

"She's an inspirational leader," he said.

"We as an Australian footballing community should be thankful that we're witnessing one of the best players in the world.

"It's history, as an Australian player at a World Cup to do what she's done.

READ MORE AT THE WORLD GAME

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Kerr becomes first Aussie to score World Cup hat-trick
Kerr becomes first Aussie to score World Cup hat-trick

"All the accolades must go to Sam but also the service she got throughout the game from the rest of the team."

If there was one thing missing, it was a backflip.

Kerr laughed off her missing trademark celebration.

Australia's Sam Kerr, center, fights for the ball with Jamaica's Toriana Patterson, right, and Jamaica goalkeeper Nicole McClure
Australia's Sam Kerr, center, fights for the ball with Jamaica's Toriana Patterson, right, and Jamaica goalkeeper Nicole McClure.
AP

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