Sadly they came up short and it was the Scandinavians progressed to the quarter-finals where they were defeated by England’s Lionesses.
While it would have been a dream meeting for the Matildas, the hard-nosed Kennedy is not dwelling on what might have been as she prepares to make her return to the national team in Adelaide.
“The last performance I had for the Matildas was the Norway game, and while that’s not in my head mentally [this] is the next opportunity I have been waiting for,” she said.
“The worst part was having to wait so long before a game. Mentally we have all dealt with it and we just wanted to get back on the field. Our focus is now on the Olympics having got that game out of the way against Chile.
“In that World Cup, we never really played to our potential from the start … it was frustrating falling short … we were not at our best the whole tournament. But we turned the corner a long time ago.
“Hopefully we can put on a good performance. For all of us the opportunity to play at home doesn’t come round as often as we would like.”
Kennedy is wearing an arm protector – she has a scaphoid break in her wrist – but will use a light splint if she is given the go ahead to start at the heart of the Australian defence.
While these two friendlies are important – the first, in front of a record crowd in NSW on Saturday was a 2-1 win for Australia – they are just part of a program geared to helping the team qualify for Tokyo 2020.
“This is not a time we want to be peaking. We are coming off the back of the season [in the United States and before the W-League starts] and there’s a lot of players coming back,” Kennedy said.
Kennedy’s teammate Caitlin Foord played a key role in the win over the weekend, creating the second goal with a lovely move and long ball which Sam Kerr slotted home in the second half.
But even though she has been an international for nearly a decade, Foord, who celebrated turning 25 on Monday, knows that she cannot take her place in the starting line-up for granted.
After playing in the World Cup she lost her place in the Portland team in the US women’s league and that, she admitted, was a big blow to her self esteem.
“The 90 minutes the other day was my first 90 minutes since that game against Norway in France,” Foord said. “I haven’t played very many minutes since the World Cup and its important for me to be playing match minutes to build confidence back up.
“Not playing, it does shatter your confidence a bit. To build that back up and get on a roll again leading into the Olympic qualifiers is important.”
Michael Lynch is The Age’s chief soccer reporter and also reports on motor sport and horseracing