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Norway bounce back with Germany success

Germany 0-2 Norway
Beaten 4-0 by Spain in their opening game, Nils Lexerød's side relaunched their Group B bid with a clinical win against Germany.

Norway celebrate at full time
Norway celebrate at full time ©Getty Images

• Norway strike twice in first half to go second in Group B
• Goalkeeper Cecilie Fiskerstrand performs wonders to keep Germany on three points
• Norway beat Germany 1-0 in March with Vilde Fjelldal on target then, too
• Norway claim first WU19 EURO win against Germany in seven attempts
Next matches: Norway v England, Germany v Spain (Tuesday)

Norway put their 4-0 opening loss to Spain behind them with an eye-catching victory in WU19 EURO Group B, defeating four-time champions Germany to jump ahead of their opponents into second.

The two sides played out a high-quality match in Lod, with Norway taking an early lead on the break through Vilde Fjelldal before a Rebecca Knaak own goal gave them breathing space. They did not need it, though were grateful to goalkeeper Cecilie Fiskerstrand for keeping Maren Meinert's charges at bay.

Fjelldal found the net when Norway edged a 1-0 victory against Germany in March, and she ensured that they will not forget her name in a hurry after another telling contribution. The Scandinavian hopefuls began on the back foot but stunned their opponents with a fifth-minute strike following a well-timed counterattack, Fjelldal pouncing after Joelle Wedemeyer had blocked a shot from Nora Eide Lie.

The best chance of the half nonetheless fell to Germany, when Rieke Dieckmann raced clear with half an hour gone and set up Lea Schüller to bear down on goal. The No11's finish was not good enough to beat Fiskerstrand – and the goalkeeper would put up similar resistance before the game was over.

Germany seemed to be closing in on an equaliser, yet it was their opponents who struck next moments later. This time, it was Fridlund who had their effort intercepted – by keeper Carina Schlüter – and although the rebound fell to Maria Hiim, it was Knaak who got the decisive touch to put the ball in her own net.

Having edged England 2-1 in their initial outing, Germany looked to claw their way back in the second half, with the promise of a comeback win opening the doors to the semi-finals. That desire did nothing to change the outcome, as a series of near misses and saves from the heroic Fiskerstrand brought Norway's campaign back to life.

Nils Lexerød, Norway coach: "We won the game not because we played better than Germany – we won because of our team spirit today. We believed we could win after the loss to Spain but we needed to do it and now we have a strong chance to go through to the second round. We can't look at or control the outcome of the game between Spain and Germany, and we will face a good England team, even if they haven't been able to win yet."

Maren Meinert, Germany coach: "The main difference between the first match and this was the result. We played well, but it was just not enough and luck was not on our side today either. We have to go into the next game, play the same way and I believe it will be fine. We know that Spain might be the best team in the group, but we have to win in order to go through to the next round."