Brave Caitlin Foord was sporting a developing black eye and a lump on the side of her head after a Women's World Cup loss that she said was her "worst nightmare".
Foord clashed heads with Sweden captain Kosovare Asllani before halftime but soldiered on, sporting a bandaged head, for the entirety of the 2-0 loss in the bronze medal play-off.
Foord played in the 4-3 loss to the US in the bronze medal playoff at the Tokyo Olympics and it was a case of deja vu.
"It hurts to be here and get so close and fall short again," she said.
"The exact same thing happened at the Olympics and it was my worst nightmare for that to happen again and it has happened again.
"We just need to grow and learn from it and never let this happen again.
"I feel like we deserved to get something out of this tournament. I know we have, but personally for us to not have something around our neck is very disappointing."
The Matildas will campaign in Paris Olympic qualifiers in October and will build towards playing in a final in 2024.
"I guess we need to be at our best every single game and every moment, and hopefully some luck falls our way," she said.
"These last two games the luck has fallen to the other teams.
"Sometimes that just happens. I guess you do create your own luck and that will happen for us moving forward. We will win something."
Foord showed the commitment and resilience that has been her trademark in the quarter-final.
She said she had no intention of leaving the pitch with her injury.
"As long as there was no blood. I am not good with blood," she said.
"I think if that happened it would have been a different story.
"This wasn't going to stop me. I wanted to give everything and wanted to leave everything out there.
"I would have taken this (shiner) with a medal around my neck. I guess it just hurts a bit more that there is nothing to show for it."
Foord allayed fears that she may have been concussed.
"I was completely fine. I knew what happened. I could say the score, who we were playing and who we played last," she said.
"I passed all the tests. I didn't black out. It is just an egg that has turned into a bruise."
Australian Associated Press