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Netherlands recover to hold Italy

Published: Saturday 22 November 2014, 21.27CET
Netherlands 1-1 Italy
A Dutch women's record crowd of 13,100 saw Vivianne Miedema ensure the second leg on Thursday will begin level.
by Ricardo Cândido
from ADO Den Haag stadium
Netherlands recover to hold Italy
Vivianne Miedema, the top scorer in qualifying ©Sportsfile
Published: Saturday 22 November 2014, 21.27CET

Netherlands recover to hold Italy

Netherlands 1-1 Italy
A Dutch women's record crowd of 13,100 saw Vivianne Miedema ensure the second leg on Thursday will begin level.

The Netherlands and Italy will go into the second leg of their FIFA Women's World Cup play-off final in Verona on Thursday level after a draw in The Hague.

Melania Gabbiadini got Italy an early away goal. But 18-year-old Vivianne Miedema delighted a Dutch women's record crowd of 13,100 with her competition-leading 14th goal of qualifying after the break, and said: "It's a pity they scored an away goal so easily and we did not score more. If we play like we can, we'll beat them."

It was a level start but on 19 minutes the visitors, aiming to match their qualifications of 1991 and 1999, were ahead when Gabbiadini produced an unerring slot after a one-two with captain Patrizia Panico. The Netherlands responded well, Miedema having a header blocked on the line from a Mandy van den Berg corner.

Roger Reijners's side, aming for a maiden World Cup finals, increased the pressure after the break and were rewarded when Miedema turned in a low Manon Melis cross. It would have been more but Miedema had a close-range shot blocked on 84 minutes and Tessel Middag could not turn in the rebound.

Qualified
UEFA: England, France, Germany, Norway, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland*, Netherlands or Italy
AFC (5): Australia, China, Japan (holders), South Korea, Thailand*
CAF (3): Cameroon,*, Ivory Coast*, Nigeria
CONCACAF (4): Canada (hosts), Costa Rica*, Mexico, United States
CONMEBOL (2): Brazil, Colombia
CONMBEOL-CONCACAF play-off (1): Ecuador v Trinidad & Tobago (first leg 0-0, return 2 December in Port of Spain)
OFC (1): New Zealand

*Debut

Last updated: 04/06/15 3.41CET

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