WU19 EURO matchday two: what we learned

Our reporting team in Israel draw lessons from the second games at the WU19 EURO, with Norway's super keeper, England's Achilles heel and a tense finale set up.

No way through: Cecilie Fiskerstrand
No way through: Cecilie Fiskerstrand ©Getty Images

Fiskerstrand keeps Germany at bay
"Luck was not on our side," Germany coach Maren Meinert rued after Saturday's 2-0 defeat by Norway. Nor, most definitely, was Cecilie Fiskerstrand. The Stabæk keeper was brilliant throughout in Lod, an impenetrable barrier that – try as they might (and they really did try) – Germany could not find a way through. The four-time champions had 23 attempts on goal but the only occasion senior international Fiskerstrand was beaten, Rieke Dieckmann's effort came back off the woodwork.

Sweden keep Denmark hemmed in
For the first time anybody could recall, Sweden met a side taller than them at the WU19 EURO. Denmark are packed with towering figures but it was not until the closing stages that they began to use it to their advantage. Until then, Sweden had simply not let them, shoring up out wide and not allowing Denmark to cross. With the end in sight for Sweden and the Danes throwing caution to the wind there were chances for an aerial equaliser but Denmark could not take them.

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Late lapses hurt England again
If WU19 EURO matches finished after 80 minutes as they do at U17 level then England would have two points and a grip on their semi-final destiny. Instead they will go into their last game needing favours from a Spain team that struck twice in the last eight minutes from set pieces to triumph 3-1. Three days earlier it had been a corner that led to Rebecca Knaak's late winner for Germany, and Mo Marley's side cannot afford to let their guard down again when they face Norway.

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France have quality throughout
Gilles Eyquem made six changes to the side that beat Denmark on the opening day, and they duly served up more of the same with a 4-0 victory over Israel. It reflected the quality running throughout his squad. Particularly dangerous from set pieces, for France technical prowess plus spirited performances equals triumph. They have a never say die attitude, too. Hawa Cissoko had her hand strapped up and was injured for a second time late on but still saw out the full 90 minutes.

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Group B too close to call
Only a 7-0 defeat by Germany can deny Spain a place in the last four (it has happened before), but the race for Group B's other qualifying spot is still very much on. If Germany win they are through but if they draw they need England to win. Norway could be out with a victory but progress with a 1-0 defeat depending on what happens in the other match, while England's dream is not over either: if they win by two goals and Germany lose they advance. Simple, right?*

Matchday three is on Tuesday. Tickets cost 10ILS (€2.50) and are available either at the stadiums or via this link. The site is in Hebrew.

*Please note that these are according to the editor's calculations and are not official

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