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Sweden options encourage 'happy' Sundhage

Championing the depth of her squad, Pia Sundhage said Sweden's defeat of Italy "showed we have a strong team and many options". In contrast, Antonio Cabrini lamented "basic mistakes".

Sweden options encourage 'happy' Sundhage
Sweden options encourage 'happy' Sundhage ©UEFA.com

Pia Sundhage, Sweden coach
It always feels good to be top of the group heading into a quarter-final. We like that, and the fact that we scored some goals also feels good. I'm happy with the goals and the beginning of the second half and that the ones who came off the bench played good football.

The first half was not good, we stood still too much, but when we speed things up – the ball and our minds – then it turns out well. We know about all the teams, but I have no idea who we might or might not face. I'm here and now I'm enjoying our win against Italy.

[Scoring three goals without Kosovare Asllani on the pitch] says a lot about the ones who came off the bench. Therese Sjögran came into that position and we held on to the ball better and got our attacking play in order. It shows that we have a strong team and that we have many options for the starting XI and which players are able to decide games coming off the bench.

Antonio Cabrini, Italy coach
We certainly didn't play well in the first ten minutes of the second half. Sweden scored twice from our mistakes. We fell apart a little and I'm sorry because we played a good, relaxed first half without running any risks. The first half told the real story.

The first ten minutes of the second half were ruined by basic defensive mistakes which put us out of contention and made it easy for Sweden. This showed how crucial keeping your concentration is: if you drop your guard for just five minutes, it erases all the good things done in the rest of the game.

Our aim was to qualify, but we must not settle for having achieved this first objective. We'll have to see what happens in Group B tomorow to see who our next opponents will be, but it's obvious that once you've got through, you think of going even further. We're happy to have gome through, but we're sorry that we committed some mistakes which prevented us from beating Sweden.

The reason [for the rotation] was to give some of the girls a rest considering they'd played two games in just a few days. I gave those who had not played a chance to participate actively in this tournament. We'd practically qualified already and the European Championships are very tiring.