SYDNEY – Matilde did not panic, but still, after escaping to 3-2 Chile on Penrith on Saturday. But with the time of the Women's World Cup countdown, their latest results will certainly keep in mind.
After filming the hearts and minds of the Australian public with his impressive wins over Brazil this time last year, Matildas have failed to reproduce the magic against Chile No. 39.
Dominant most of the match, Matildas have made missed missed chances and expensive mistakes because Chile have turned their three possibilities into three goals. Compared to that, Matildas led the game by commanding possession and territory, but despite their 15 attempts at goal, they simply could not beat Chile's goalkeeper Christiane Endler – simply Chile's best player of the day – and instead relied on two sentences to close the gap.
"We certainly had control over the game and probably gave them a chance," coach Matildas Alen Stajčić said after the game. "It's a bit disappointing, we've certainly donated two of them [opportunities], and maybe even third, but it's international football – you get punished for your mistakes.
"When you look at the other side of the playfield, we've created enough to get into positions with a good goal, and it's probably missing or a shrinkage or cracking or clinical element that's needed several times."
But with less than eight months to the Women's World Cup in France, the countdown is for Stajčić to start the 11th, with the latest appearances on the side announcing pressure on his team.
Matildas' comprehensive game plan, with several offensive players playing outside the field, asked whether or not that party would continue to adopt the same approach regardless of the opposition. But, despite their latest defeat, Stajčić refuses to think about changing the style.
"We can not ask players to play, and then when we have a mistake, we'll say," Oh, we'll throw a baby with bathing water, "he said.
"We'll have to be better.
"We've played for a long time with a certain style, and such games are happening [our] The English game, where we were poor and we get a score, sometimes results are not a reflection of performance.
"We do not want these mistakes, but I will always return our players."
The hottest team in 2017, Matildas lost only one game in 11; including the first victory over the United States, three victories against Brazil [including a massive 6-1 demolition], and three victories over China. They claimed the inaugural tournament of the people, as they moved to the FIFA world championship, reaching their top four places.
Unfortunately for Matildas, their construction to the World Cup in 2018 did not continue the same trend.
They started a strong year against Norway, but soon fell to their first defeat in 13 games and ended the quarter on the Algarve Cup. They were again shocked to Japan and lost the final round of Assisi before they allowed the late-night US strike to equalize in ToN, and later lost the title to the hosts. The newest side of France won a clear advantage, while they managed to save against England.
For the Matilda fans, it is far from the tops they have experienced in 2017.
"It must have been a great year, in terms of the results and the way we play," Stajčić said. "But improvement and development are not always linear.
"Just like everything in life, sometimes falling and falling on the road, it's a pretty decent hammer on the road, so we have to learn and grow from it and make sure we keep looking at what we need to do better to give us the best chances we can when we get there by June next year. "
Inability to concentrate for 90 minutes seems to be a problem that went through the past year because they allowed their opposition back to the game despite the dominance of the game. And it could prove expensive in the high roles of the World Cup.
Only last year, Matildas allowed Brazil a minute of speed in their second friendly match in Newcastle, while the passage of the United States injuries in July saw the best world team that took advantage of the opportunity and raised the match.
"I think there are elements of that [lack of concentration] this is surely the truth, but we play a sport in which the goal can quickly replace the momentum, no matter who is at the top and can change the momentum, "he said.
"I do not think I saw a football match in which one team dominated 90 minutes, that's simply not possible.
"We need to make sure that if we're not controlled in the game, we're doing a little better in the game. It's a performance we have to look at, the results can come and go and easily switch to football, but it's a performance that actually spells most of the results is what we focus on. "
Although Matildas had the opportunity to be proud of Chile, the only measure of importance is the numbers at the traffic light, and although Stajčić is right that a football game can turn at any moment if Matildas made an outing as a Saturday against France, England or USA on the World Cup, they would be sent home with tails between their legs.