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Barrling reasoned, Marley and Rastavac reflective

Published: Monday 9 July 2012, 10.40CET
Calle Barrling likened Sweden's draw with Spain to a heavyweight boxing match, while Serbia's Milan Rastavac and England's Mo Marley reflected on their final tournament encounter.
Barrling reasoned, Marley and Rastavac reflective
Ángel Vilda's Spain finished top of Group B ©Sportsfile
Published: Monday 9 July 2012, 10.40CET

Barrling reasoned, Marley and Rastavac reflective

Calle Barrling likened Sweden's draw with Spain to a heavyweight boxing match, while Serbia's Milan Rastavac and England's Mo Marley reflected on their final tournament encounter.

With neither side able to land a decisive blow, Calle Barrling attributed Sweden's goalless draw with fellow Group B heavyweights Spain to mutual respect. A semi-final berth awaits both teams and Ángel Vilda's Group B winners are ready to take on "whoever the draw holds". Milan Rastavac, meanwhile, reflected on Serbia's "huge experience" and Mo Marley bemoaned England's lack of composure in a game of "fine margins".

That game was like a match between two heavyweight boxers, the teams were really sparring with each other
Calle Barrling
It was a very even game, just like we expected, though the clearest opportunities went our way
Ángel Vilda
We have time to develop since only four of our players will be ineligible for next year's competition, so we will have the same core group
Milan Rastavac
We've played well in patches and competed with everyone and they would say we're tough opposition
Mo Marley

SWEDEN 0-0 SPAIN
Calle Barrling, Sweden coach

That game was like a match between two heavyweight boxers, the teams were really sparring with each other. Neither of the sides wanted to take many risks, probably because they respect us and we respect them, so the draw was the right result. Like their coach said, we knocked out Germany but there are now four teams in this competition – all of whom can win – so it doesn't matter who are the favourites.

We don't mind who we face, we'll just play our own game and want to keep on winning. We made some changes today, as did Spain, but it's not just about resting players. We've got a very good bench too and wanted to make sure everybody kept up their match sharpness, as it could be one of those newcomers who end up being the hero at a later stage.

Ángel Vilda, Spain coach
It was a very even game, just like we expected, though the clearest opportunities went our way. The two teams played a lot of players who hadn't been involved before and needed to get some game time, which they've now got. The match was very keenly contested – though I think we clearly edged it. The 0-0 draw is a good result for us because it ensures we successfully finished in first place in the group.

I don't mind who we face in the semis, we'll take on whatever the draw holds for us. In terms of who is the favourites for this tournament, I've been saying for months, and I'll say it again now, that Sweden must be the favourites as they're the ones who knocked out Germany – which must have been a huge boost for their confidence.

SERBIA 0-0 ENGLAND
Milan Rastavac, Serbia coach
We showed slightly more experience than previous games and it comes down to what this tournament has brought us. The strong opposition we have faced have taught us lessons, to be more compact in defence and keep the ball better. There were chances for both sides but the most important things for us is that we improved and played at a higher level, which was our main goal.

We have time to develop since only four of our players will be ineligible for next year's competition, so we will have the same core group. It has been a huge experience and the only thing missing was the results, but I put this down to inexperience.

Mo Marley, England coach
I'm really happy we've got a point. After the disappointment of losing 4-0 [against Spain] we showed a lot of character. We were brave, and the way the girls have acquitted themselves shows we deserve to be here. We're honest enough to know we've got to do better in the future but I think the way we applied ourselves and stuck with the principles of playing the game in the right manner justifies why we are here.

You've got to take your opportunities. That's youth, it's inexperience and playing with haste. At this level there are fine margins. Sometimes it's about playing badly but still winning. We've played well in patches and competed with everyone and they would say we're tough opposition. I think we are on the right track for the future.

Last updated: 09/07/12 12.07CET

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