The Netherlands confirmed their place in the World Cup knockout stage with a game to spare as they beat Cameroon at the Stade du Hainaut in Valenciennes.
Arsenal’s Vivianne Miedema, 22, became the European champions’ all-time top scorer as she registered her 59th and 60th international goals to eclipse Manon Melis’ record in just her 77th cap.
Miedema headed Sarina Wiegman’s side ahead as she met Lyon winger Shanice van de Sanden’s cross after 41 minutes, but Cameroon were level just 154 seconds later through Gabrielle Onguene.
Roared on by more than 10,000 fans, the Dutch made amends swiftly after half-time as Cameroon’s failure to clear a free-kick allowed Arsenal midfielder Dominique Bloodworth to convert.
Miedema then ensured the victory, and qualification, as she cut inside from the left before unleashing a powerful shot beyond goalkeeper Annette Ngo Ndom with five minutes remaining.
The Netherlands top Group E after winning back-to back World Cup matches for the first time, before Canada’s match against New Zealand in Grenoble at 20:00 BST.
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The Netherlands, ranked eighth in the world, needed an injury-time winner to edge their group opener against New Zealand and lacked a cutting edge despite dominating the play before Miedema’s breakthrough.
That goal had left WSL top scorer Miedema level with former striker Melis, who retired from international football in 2016 aged 29.
In a first meeting between the sides, Cameroon offered stern resistance to frequent sparks of pace and trickery from Dutch wingers Lieke Martens and van de Sanden, and should have been ahead when Onguene dragged a close-range shot wide after 20 minutes.
Onguene caught out onrushing Dutch goalkeeper Sari van Veenendaal to level the scores, before paying tribute to the nation’s former captain Ghislaine Bebom who died last Sunday.
Alain Djeumfa’s Cameroon side, beaten by Canada in their opening match, must now hope to finish as one of the four best third-placed sides if they are to reach the knockout stages.
Miedema leads the way – the stats
- The Netherlands scored more than one goal in a Women’s World Cup match for the first time.
- Cameroon have lost four of their last five matches at the Women’s World Cup, losing three in a row.
- Vivianne Miedema became the first Netherlands player to score more than once in a Women’s World Cup match.
- No Dutch woman has netted more World Cup goals than Miedema’s two.
- The Netherlands have won 13 and lost none of their 16 previous matches against teams from Africa.
The Netherlands complete their group-stage campaign against Canada on Thursday (17:00 BST) in what could be a battle for Group E’s top-spot in Reims, while Cameroon face New Zealand in Montpellier at the same time.