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Dongus helps Germany complete finals lineup

Germany qualified again as Fabienne Dongus struck a hat-trick to defeat Group 3 hosts Denmark 3-0 and set up a last-four tie with France on 28 July in Nyon after Iceland meet holders Spain.

Fabienne Dongus (right) celebrates scoring with Lina Magull
Fabienne Dongus (right) celebrates scoring with Lina Magull ©Getty Images

Germany maintained their record of qualifying for every UEFA European Women's Under-17 Championship with a comfortable 3-0 defeat of Denmark.

Both sides had won their first two second qualifying round fixtures but Germany held a goal-difference lead over Group 3 hosts Denmark. Fabienne Dongus − who registered a hat-trick in Germany's opening 5-0 win against Finland and also scored in the 9-0 beating of Russia − claimed a treble on six, 57 and 59 minutes, ensuring the two-time champions of qualification with 17 unanswered goals and confirming her status as the round's top scorer.

When Dongus struck following good work from Lena Petermann it looked like a stroll, but Denmark responded and Laura Jakobsen had two good chances which Friederike Abt dealt with capably in the Germany goal. After the break, wingers Sara Däbritz and Linda Dallmann were inspired for Germany and the second of those set up Dongus for goal number two before the hat-trick was completed soon after.

Coach Ralf Peter, who has led Germany to all their final tournaments, said: "I am very happy right now. I am so proud of this entire team – both on and off the field. Many of my players did a great job today but Sara Däbritz and Lina Magull had especially good matches. Obviously Fabienne Dongus scored three goals and gave us victory so she was the most important player today."

Peter's side meet France in the semi-finals at the Colovray Stadium on 28 July, following the other tie between Iceland and holders Spain. The final is three days later in UEFA's Swiss home town, with Germany aiming to reclaim the title they took in 2008 and 2009 but lost in the semi-finals against the Republic of Ireland a year ago.

Third place in the group went to Finland with a 2-0 win against Russia, Vera Saastamoinen and Nora Heroum scoring in the first half. The margin would have been bigger but for an excellent performance by captain Daria Meshcheriakova in the Russia goal.