"We fought for it and got it," said Spain goalscorer Verónica Boquete after her side set up a quarter-final meeting with Norway, leaving Russia's players to rue their finishing.
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Spain goalscorer Verónica Boquete expressed her pleasure after La Roja sealed a 1-1 draw with Russia that set up a quarter-final meeting with Norway on Monday.
"We're happy," said the forward, who now has two goals at Sweden 2013. "We will try to do our thing [against Norway]: have possession, play, try to combine with each other and move the ball." As for Russia – eliminated after Denmark won the drawing of lots for the other best third-placed team alongside Iceland – their players pointed to an inability to take their chances, with Elena Morozova saying: "We were not sharp enough in front of Spain's goal."
Verónica Boquete, Spain forward
We're happy. It was the goal we set ourselves, to get through the group stage. We knew everything was in our hands and that was really good. We were put under pressure; it was a tough match as expected because Russia went out there hoping to qualify for the quarter-finals. In the end, we fought for it and got it.
I think in the first half we were better. We scored and we enjoyed our best period of the game, but we couldn't get the second goal. The minutes passed and we knew that the scoreline was 1-0, and then Russia equalised. In the second half, we didn't know if we should try to go for the second or just wait and Russia took advantage of that and played their game.
Physically, Norway are very strong and better than us. We will try to do our thing: have possession, play, try to combine with each other and move the ball. We must also pay attention to their most important players and set-pieces. We will try to reach the semi-finals.
The goal was to make the quarters and anything that comes now will be good. Our motto in this tournament is 'dream big' – until now it was to be in the quarter-finals and now it's to go through to the semi-finals. We'll see where we take our football, our level and our desire. Now we have 90 minutes to do it.
Alexia Putellas, Spain forward
We are so happy with our qualification and to be able to stay four more days in Sweden and play the quarter-finals. We had many chances, but they didn't end up in the net. We tried a lot of times but we couldn't score. The positive thing is that we finished second in the group and we are in the quarter-finals.
Norway are a very strong team and they've qualified for the quarter-finals. They're a team from the north of Europe and we know that they are very direct, very strong, very good in the air and also know how to play football.
Elena Terekhova, Russia midfielder
We hoped to win, of course. We tried to do everything for that but didn't succeed in the end. We are capable of doing many things and we did our best.
We started to get closer to Spain [towards the end of the first half], not allowing them to get the ball. We pressed further up [the pitch]. We played too deep in defence during the first 30 minutes. We wanted to score and tried to get that goal, but we understood that we couldn't afford to concede as well. Unfortunately, we didn't score.
To be honest, I did not think too much [for my goal]. I just decided to hit it immediately. I didn't mind if the goalkeeper was going to parry it, as we had some players there who could score on the rebound. My task was to hit it properly first time.
Elena Morozova, Russia forward
I think our goalkeeper had a great game today and our defenders as well. However, we were not that good going forward. The first priority was not to concede and after that we of course tried to score. We lacked some clinical finishing in the end. We were not sharp enough in front of Spain's goal.