England's Faye White forced Sweden to concede their first goal in eleven UEFA WOMEN'S EURO 2009™ matches and the point it earned them was enough to carry Hope Powell's team through to the quarter-finals alongside their already-qualified opponents.
Sweden, who cancelled out White's 28th-minute header with a penalty from Victoria Sandell Svensson, were also celebrating as they won Group C with seven points to set up a meeting with old rivals Norway at the Helsinki Football Stadium on Friday. England's success in progressing means they stay in Turku to face hosts Finland on Thursday.
Sweden had scored early goals in their first two fixtures but England proved more obdurate opposition and offered the physical challenge Thomas Dennerby's side had not encountered previously in the tournament. England had an early sight of goal but Kelly Smith snatched at the chance and it flew wide, and they did not threaten again until the 23rd minute when a deep cross found Sue Smith ideally positioned at the far post though her header went straight to Sweden No1 Hedvig Lindahl.
Therese Sjögran's foul then gave England the free-kick from which they took the lead. Karen Carney floated the ball in and captain White, standing by the penalty spot, climbed impressively to loop her header over Lindahl. An equalising chance followed almost immediately as Lindsay Johnson dwelt on the ball, allowing Sandell Svensson to engineer a shooting position. Johnson was then on hand to clear Charlotte Rohlin's header from a corner, a fraction before Lotta Schelin clipped a half-chance wide. Sweden were turning on the power and five minutes before the break they levelled through Sandel Svensson's spot-kick following Katie Chapman's foul on Schelin as she prepared to shoot.
There was plenty more action before the interval with England suffering a scare in added time when Sara Thunebro's drilled free-kick was headed off the line by Alex Scott. Kelly Smith had scored a spectacular goal against Russia and her shooting power led to her coming desperately close in the second half. Immediately after the restart she forced Lindahl into a flying save and then with a crisp left-foot volley forced the goalkeeper down to her right. However, as the clock wound down it became clear that a draw suited both teams, though White would have won it for England had she not sent her header narrowly over the top when well placed.