Spain up and running with Sweden scalp
Friday, 18 July 2014
Sweden 0-2 Spain
Jorge Vilda's side set up a tense final day in Group B as goals from Nahikari García and Alba Redondo kept their hopes alive.
Article top media content
Spain reignited their UEFA European Women's Under-19 Championship hopes as goals from Nahikari García and Alba Redondo saw off Sweden to leave Group B finely poised.
• García and Redondo goals secure Spain's first points
• Victory moves Spain level with Sweden in Group B
• Both teams now level in group, three behind Ireland
• Last day sees Spain v England, Sweden v Ireland
After defeat by the Republic of Ireland in their opener, Spain could not afford another setback and it made for a cautious opening in Strommen. Jorge Vilda's team stepped it up before the break, however, García giving them a 1-0 lead, and they looked the more likely scorers from then on, sealing the points when Redondo headed in 11 minutes from time.
Sweden were not afforded the same space they enjoyed in their opening victory over England, struggling to stamp their authority, and Spain took the initiative three minutes before the interval. Central midfielder María Caldentey snatched possession on the edge of the box and slipped the ball through for García, who finished expertly.
Spain were always on the front foot from then on. Andrea Sánchez headed firmly wide and then crashed the ball against the woodwork before turning provider, delivering a cross for Redondo, timing her run perfectly, to get on the end of.
Calle Barrling, Sweden coach
Spain are very skilful, a good passing team. We slowed them down in the first half, but unfortunately they were a bit lucky as they scored right at the end of the first half. I think that was decisive. We used a lot of energy in the second half but were not skillful enough to score. You don't always get what you want. We knew when we came here that we needed two wins [in group stage] and we can still get them. I know we will come back – we always come back after defeats.
Jorge Vilda, Spain coach
It was a vital match for us, almost like a final – the girls knew it and it showed on the pitch. The next game [against England] will be another final for us. The result of the other match can affect the outcome so we should go out and win to go through to the semi-finals. We need to understand how to play against England – they are a team who like to have the ball; Sweden sat off and let us have a lot of it today.