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Belgium 1-1 Iceland: Vanhaevermaet earns Red Flames point

Justine Vanhaevermaet's penalty cancelled out Berglind Thorvaldsdóttir's opening goal as the sides shared the spoils in Group D.

Women's EURO highlights: Belgium 1-1 Iceland

Goals from Berglind Thorvaldsdóttir and Justine Vanhaevermaet livened up a cagey encounter in Manchester as Belgium and Iceland each earned a point in Group D.

Key moments

33' Evrard saves Thorvaldsdóttir penalty
47' S Jónsdóttir low drive denied by Evrard
50' Thorvaldsdóttir header breaks deadlock
67' Vanhaevermaet equalises from penalty spot
79' Wullaert curler parried by Sigurdardóttir
90+2' Jóhannsdóttir heads narrowly wide

Match in brief: Action-packed second half ends level

Berglind Thorvaldsdóttir rues her penalty miss
Berglind Thorvaldsdóttir rues her penalty missUEFA via Getty Images

Both teams struggled to settle in a scrappy opening on a warm afternoon in Manchester, and it took 33 minutes for the first real chance of the contest.

Iceland pushed towards the Belgium box as the famous Thunderclap of their supporters boomed from the stands, and when Sveindís Jane Jónsdóttir's shot crashed off Davina Philtjens's outstretched arm, VAR was called into action to confirm: Iceland penalty.

Nicky Evrard danced on her line as Berglind Thorvaldsdóttir approached the spot. Guessing right, the Red Flames' shot-stopper got low to keep the scoreline even.

It was anyone's for the taking in the second half, but Iceland struck almost immediately as Jónsdóttir's motoring run capped by a low drive required Evrard to spring into action.

Berglind Thorvaldsdóttir scores the opener
Berglind Thorvaldsdóttir scores the openerUEFA via Getty Images

Minutes later, however, Thorsteinn Halldórsson's side finally broke the deadlock as Thorvaldsdóttir made amends for her earlier penalty miss by connecting with Karólína Lea Vilhjálmsdóttir's teasing delivery to glance in the opener.

But Belgium weren't deterred. Tiptoeing the edge of the Iceland box, Elena Dhont forced a foul from Gunnhildur Jónsdóttir to win the second spot kick of the match in the 67th minute. With a cool finish, Justine Vanhaevermaet sent Sandra Sigurdardóttir the wrong way to restore the parity.

Tessa Wullaert went close with just over ten minutes left on the clock, but Sigurdardóttir was alert to parry to safety. Belgium pressed high and Iceland fought back as a lively ending ensued. In a final push, Alexandra Jóhannsdóttir headed narrowly wide, leaving the sides to finish all square.

As it happened: Belgium 1-1 Iceland

Player of the Match: Sveindís Jane Jónsdóttir (Iceland)

UEFA via Getty Images

"She was Iceland's most dangerous player, and their main attacking threat to create opportunities. She was the team's focal point. An impressive long throw."
UEFA Technical Observer panel

Andri Valsson, match reporter

An entertaining match, but neither team will be happy with taking away just one point. Iceland had the upper hand for long periods in the game but paid the price for their penalty miss. Their mental strength was visible, however, as the team came together afterwards to create a few more great chances to seal the deal.

Belgium will be the happier of the sides and should be proud of how they fought back into the game. They matched Iceland's physical style, were organised at the back and created chances to score more. It's a point on the table for both nations, who will be eager to get something more out of their next two games in order to reach the quarter-finals.

Sveindís Jane Jónsdóttir: 'We deserved more'


Justine Vanhaevermaet, Belgium forward: "It's a double-edged feeling to end up with a draw, but I think the game could have gone both ways. We had a really good game plan, but our passing wasn't as solid as it might have been."

Berglind Thorvaldsdóttir, Iceland forward: "It was a really good feeling [to score] and celebrating with the fans from Iceland was amazing. We came for the win, but a draw is not the end of the world. I'm sure we will come back stronger in the next game."

Tessa Wullaert, Belgium forward: "The game started as we expected; it was really physical and we had to deal with it. We adapted in the second half and created some chances, but it was a 50-50 game, which could have gone either way. One point is OK today."

Wullaert on Belgium point

Key stats

  • Iceland have ended a run of four successive Women's EURO defeats but have still won only one of their 11 matches at the finals (D2 L8).
  • Belgium have only failed to score in three of their last 27 Women's EURO qualifying and final tournament matches.
  • Belgium have lost only three of their last 17 international matches (W10 D4).
  • Iceland have won only one of their 11 Women’s EURO final tournament matches (D2 L8).
  • Iceland have not scored more than one goal in any of their 11 Women's EURO final tournament matches.
  • Iceland captain Sara Björk Gunnarsdóttir has now made 11 Women's EURO final tournament appearances. She has featured in all 11 of Iceland's matches at the finals and made her debut in the competition aged 18 against France in 2009.
  • Janice Cayman made her 127 appearance for Belgium, extending her lead as the most capped player for the women's national team.


Belgium: Evrard; Vangheluwe, Kees, De Neve, Philtjens; Vanhaevermaet; Cayman, Biesmans; De Caigny; Dhont (Eurlings 78), Wullaert (Van Kerkhoven 90+3)

Iceland: S Sigurdardóttir; Atladóttir, Viggósdóttir, Arnardóttir, Gísladóttir; G Jónsdóttir, Brynjarsdóttir, Gunnarsdóttir (Albertsdóttir 86); Vilhjálmsdóttir (Jóhannsdóttir 90+1), Thorvaldsdóttir (Gudmundsdóttir 72), S Jónsdóttir

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