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Italy close in on play-off place

Published: Saturday 26 June 2004, 17.02CET
Italy 2-1 Sweden
Second-half strikes from Chiara Gazzoli and Patrizia Panico secured an important Group 1 win.
Published: Saturday 26 June 2004, 17.02CET

Italy close in on play-off place

Italy 2-1 Sweden
Second-half strikes from Chiara Gazzoli and Patrizia Panico secured an important Group 1 win.

Italy took a step closer to the UEFA Women's Championship qualifying play-offs after a dramatic comeback against group winners Sweden.

Swedish goal
After Sweden took the lead in the 14th minute it looked like the Scandinavians might repeat the heavy 5-0 defeat that they inflicted on the Italians in Stockholm last month. But Carolina Morace's team fought back and two second-half goals gave them a victory that left them second in Group 1 and well placed to clinch a two-legged tie this autumn for one of the remaining places in next summer's finals in England.

Comeback
Although without key player Hanna Ljungberg, Sweden controlled the early part of the game and took an early lead through midfield player Frida Nordin. But in front of a crowd of 3,000, the Azzurre battled hard and gradually came into the game. Chiara Gazzoli equalised just before the hour, with striker Patrizia Panico scoring the winner ten minutes later.

Final fixture
Italy's win means that Switzerland are no longer in contention for runners-up spot, which is now between the Italians and Finland. They will play their final game on 25 September away to the group's bottom team, Serbia and Montenegro. Italy won the reverse fixture 8-0. After a flying start which saw them win their first six games, Sweden have already won the group.

Last updated: 28/03/13 3.38CET

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http://www.uefa.com/womenseuro/season=0/matches/round=1655/match=70754/postmatch/report/index.html#italy+close+play+place

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