If history is any guide, the Matildas’ wait for a first win under new coach Tony Gustavsson is unlikely to end against Sweden.
A 3-2 loss to Denmark on Friday means it’s three losses from three matches for the Matildas in Gustavsson’s reign.
If they are to break that duck against Gustavsson’s home nation at the Kalmar Arena on Wednesday (AEST) it would be just the second win in 12 matches for the Australians against the Scandinavians.
Adding extra intrigue to the clash will be the fact both teams are set to meet again next month at the Tokyo Olympics, having been drawn in the same group along with New Zealand and the United States.
Of those past encounters, one in particular stands out – the 2011 World Cup quarter-final in Germany.
While the Swedes claimed a 3-1 win to knock Australia out of that tournament, the game featured teenagers Emily van Egmond, Caitlin Foord, Kyah Simon and Tameka Butt – with a 17-year-old Sam Kerr an unused substitute.
Defender Clare Polkinghorne and Elise Kellond-Knight were also involved in that match, with all those players going on to become a core part of the Matildas setup over the next 10 years.
“Gosh that seems like forever ago,” van Egmond, who earned her 100th cap against Denmark, told AAP.
“The 2011 World Cup within itself was special for a lot of us being our first World Cup.”
Van Egmond said there was no doubt about the challenge Olympic silver medallists Sweden would pose but the experienced midfielder believed there was more than enough talent in the squad to achieve a positive result.
“We know they’re obviously a good team and we have to be on our best to compete,” she said.
“Where we are now, we also have so many weapons that we can use.
“The fact we have had two games in this FIFA window is really important for us to get us a taste of what it’s going to be like in Tokyo.”
Wednesday’s game kicks off 2.45am AEST.