England women reached the World Cup final for the first time in their history following a stunning 3-1 win over co-hosts Australia on Wednesday.

Dubbed “the sixth Test” by England’s Barmy Army – still smarting after Australia kept the urn from this summer’s drawn Ashes – England passed with flying colours to set up a showdown with Spain.

Here’s how the world reacted to the Lionesses’ march to the final…

The showdown with Australia was soured by a spying controversy in the lead up to the match after a helicopter was used to film the Lionesses’ final training session before the game in Sydney.

The Australian Daily Telegraph claimed ownership of the stunt but their paper hit a more sombre tone in the aftermath, with a headline of: “Aussies shattered: blunders that ended World Cup dream” as they lamented a string of missed chances and defensive lapses.

The result was celebrated wildly in England, too.

The Australian said England ‘outclassed’ the co-hosts in Sydney, as Sam Kerr’s stunning equaliser offered only a brief respite from the Lionesses’ dominance.

“Australians can rejoice in the fact that we retained the men’s and women’s Ashes, and also beat the old foe in the recent Netball World Cup final,” they said.

“The World Cup dream is over, but a sleeping giant is now fully awake with football in this country set to ride an incredible wave of success thanks to the Matildas.”

The Age said: “A shattering 3-1 defeat to England has knocked the Matildas out of World Cup contention, their history-making, record-breaking, nation-changing run to the final four stopped in its tracks by the old enemy.

Former Socceroo John Aloisi, speaking on Channel 7 in Australia, believed Kerr paid the price after injury curtailed her participation in the early stages of the tournament.

“I will put it down to fatigue with Sam and she came on last game and played longer than she expected to play,” he said.

“Her legs were probably gone a little bit [in the second half]. That is when you start snatching at things. The two chances she had she was snatching at them.”

Sarina Wiegman has now reached a World Cup final with two different countries – a feat that has never been done before.

Wiegman said: “I don’t know! The chance that as a coach you make it to two finals is really special, we made it to four already – it’s like I’m living a fairy tale or something?”

“Absolutely superb performance,” Gary Lineker – who could only reach the 1990 World Cup semi-final before heartbreak to West Germany – said on X, formerly known as Twitter.

Gary Neville, part of England men’s so-called “Golden Generation” that never got beyond a quarter-final at a major tournament, said: “An incredible achievement.”

The former England midfielder Izzy Christiansen, who retired earlier this year, said: “To be honest I’m out of superlatives to describe Sarina Wiegman.

“To come in and change the culture, instill a winning mentality, to create a brand of football that is pragmatic, interesting, lets the talent flourish.

“We saw in the starting XI tonight that she had all of her best players on the pitch, some managers struggle to find ways to get the best out of their best players.

“You’ve just seen another masterclass again from Sarina this evening.”