Karczewska hits Armenia for six as Orlice run riot

Nikola Karczewska scored six on Thursday evening, as Poland’s women hammered Armenia 12-0 in their 2023 World Cup Qualifier in Gdynia.

After a torrid Pinatar Cup campaign, Patalon’s side returned to competitive action against an Armenian side sitting rock bottom of Group F; without a point, without a goal scored, yet with 46 put into their own net over their six previous matches.

With group leaders Norway next up on Tuesday, the Poles needed a confidence booster against Armenia – a repeat of September’s narrow 1-0 victory would hardly be that. So when FC Fleury 91 striker Karczewska rippled the net after only four minutes, it quickly allayed any fears.

By the 27th minute of the match, the 23-year-old had completed her first hat-trick; while 1.FC Koln loanee Weronika Zawistowska had also plundered the visitors’ net. Dominika Grabowska and Adriana Achcińska then added a fifth and sixth on the stroke of half time.

More of the same followed in the second period; Karczewska snagged her fourth in the first minute of the second half, and a fifth only five minutes later. Zawistowska then netted her second of the match before the hour mark. Czarni Sosnowiec defender Zofia Buszewska stretched the Poles’ lead into double figures on 65 minutes, while AZS UJ Kraków’s Anna Zapała made it eleven moments later – both assisted by Zawistowska.

Then, finally, with seventeen minutes remaining on the clock, Karczewska popped up again to compete both her and Poland’s scoring.

Still, there was time for more Polish cheers, with the reintroduction of star striker Ewa Pajor after a lengthy injury lay-off which has seen her absent from the national team since the 1-1 draw with Belgium in Seotember. She joined the fray alongside Górnik Łęczna’s 18-year-old midfielder Weronika Kaczor, making her first senior international appearance.

Next up for Patalon’s ladies are group leaders Norway, with the Orlice really needing victory to stand any chance of progression to the World Cup. They remain five points behind the Scandinavian side, and two behind second-placed Belgium, who both also recorded victories last night over Kosovo (5-1) and Albania (5-0) respectively.

POLAND – Armenia 12:0 (6:0)

Nikola Karczewska 4′, 24′, 27′, 46′, 51′, 73′; Weronika Zawistowska 18′, 58′; Dominika Grabowska 45′; Adriana Achcińska 45+2′; Zofia Buszewska 65′; Anna Zapała 68′.

Poland: Kinga Szemik – Anna Zapała, Małgorzata Mesjasz, Paulina Dudek, Zofia Buszewska – Gabriela Grzywińska (Klaudia Lefeld 68′), Adriana Achcińska (Kinga Kozak 90+1′), Nikol Kaletka (Weronika Kaczor 76′) – Weronika Zawistowska (Klaudia Maciążka 68′), Nikola Karczewska (Ewa Pajor 76′), Dominika Grabowska.

Group F Table (after match day 7):

1. 🇳🇴 Norway 19pts (+38)
2. 🇧🇪 Belgium 16pts (+38)
3. 🇵🇱 POLAND 14pts (+12)
4. 🇦🇱 Albania 7pts (-14)
5. 🇽🇰 Kosovo 4pts (-16)
6. 🇦🇲 Armenia 0pts (-58)

Remaining fixtures:

12 April:
🇦🇲 Armenia – Albania 🇦🇱
🇳🇴 Norway – POLAND 🇵🇱
🇽🇰 Kosovo – Belgium 🇧🇪

1 September:
🇽🇰 Kosovo – Armenia 🇦🇲
🇦🇱 Albania – POLAND 🇵🇱

2 September:
🇧🇪 Belgium – Norway 🇳🇴

6 September:
🇦🇲 Armenia – Belgium 🇧🇪
🇳🇴 Norway – Albania 🇦🇱
🇵🇱 POLAND – Kosovo 🇽🇰

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