Author Topic: European Cup 2013  (Read 17858 times)

Offline Alan

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Norway-Russia 2-3
« Reply #80 on: July 05, 2013, 05:46:23 PM »
Norway-Russia:
1-0 (02) Caroline Graham Hansen after 80 seconds, a near-post goal from fairly wide on the right after Hansen and Gulbrandsen worked the ball through the defence.
1-1 (08) Nelly Korovkina in the 8th minute came straight through on the right wing which was wide open.  Perhaps a specialist left-back would have closed it up.  Somehow Trine Rønning kicked air as the ball passed her on the way in.
2-1 (51) A ball from Leni Kaurin on the left wing went right across the goal to Caroline Graham Hansen who had a free shot and put the ball in the net.  Another deadly cross from Kaurin, from the left wing with her left foot.
2-2 (52) Ksenia Tsybutovic the Russian captain headed the ball into goal from a corner.
2-3 (pen. 59) after pulling by Trine Rønning, the kick was first saved by Ingrid Hjelmseth but Tsybutovic followed up and scored from the return.

Russia won 2-3 deservedly after looking quicker and more accurate for large parts of the match.  Norway had difficulty gaining and keeping possession and were too often hustled off the ball.

Caroline Graham Hansen scored both Norway's goals but described it as their worst match for a long time.  Other stand-out players were Ingvild Isaksen in central midfield, Kristine Hegland in the first half and Leni Kaurin and Ingrid Ryland after they came on after half time

Norway's defence has had better matches and looked oddly picked given the players' everyday match-experience.  Right-back was filled by a midfielder in the first half but then a right-back in the second half.  Left-back was covered by a central defender in the first half and another central defender in the second.  Meanwhile the central defence used a midfielder for the first 66 minutes.

Norway  (4-3-3):
Ingrid Hjelmseth  (Silje Vesterbekkmo 66) -
Kristine Hegland (Ingrid Ryland 46), Trine Rønning, Maren Mjelde (Marit Fiane Christensen 66), Toril H. Akerhaugen (Marita Skammelsrud Lund 46) -
Solveig Gulbrandsen (Cathrine Dekkerhus 66), Ingvild Isaksen, Ingvild Stensland (Lene Mykjåland 80) -
Caroline Graham Hansen, Elise Thorsnes (Melissa Bjånesøy 46), Emilie Bosshard Haavi (Leni Larsen Kaurin 46).

Photos: https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.532744203460223.1073741903.158611120873535&type=3
Highlights: http://www.tv2.no/sport/fotball/svak-generalproeve-av-fotballjentene-4083946.html
« Last Edit: July 10, 2013, 06:20:39 PM by Alan »
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Offline Alan

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Tame Norway lose dress rehearsal for the Euros
« Reply #81 on: July 05, 2013, 10:35:13 PM »
Moss: Norway led the match twice but had anything but a good rehearsal for the European Cup tournament.

Today's performance cannot give much confidence in Norway's hopes of a medal.  The match was the last test before the team faces Iceland in Kalmar in only six days.  "This wasn't good.  It was a bad match", said chief trainer Even Pellerud.

Norway went straight for the Russians' throat with high and aggressive play which produced an early goal.  Caroline Graham Hansen, who is tipped for a good European Cup, overcame the visitors' goalkeeper with a shot at the near post.  But although Norway dominated and sometimes threatened the Russians, the visitors equalised when the Norwegian defence stumbled.  Good Russian combination play via the right wing brought them to 1-1 after ten minutes had been played.  After the Russian goal Norway struggled to keep up the pressure and their domination deserted them.  At time the quality of passing was poor in the afternoon sunshine at Melløs stadium.  

Just after half time Norway had a chance of another goal.  Ingvild Stensland blocked an attempt to clear the ball and it went to substitute Melissa Bjånesøy.  But the shot was weak and went well wide of the target.  "We let them in at a time when we should have led by several goals.  We should never have let three goals in", said Stensland the captain.

But another goal was on the way.  Solveig Gulbrandsen found substitute Leni Kaurin on the left wing.  The buildup and the cross were brilliant, and Caroline Graham Hansen had a simple job to roll the ball in from outside the far post.

The Russians went straight into the attack and quickly equalised again.  Poor marking led to the 2-2 goal after a corner.  From then on the Norwegian play deteriorated.  Trine Rønning was too rough in the penalty area and conceded a penalty.  Ingrid Hjelmseth saved the kick but Ksenia Tsybutovich was too quick with the followup and the score was 2-3.

Norway could not come back and the match was lost.  Russia came back into the match too easily twice and produced problems which could not be addressed.      

Jon Martin Henriksen http://www.vg.no/sport/fotball/kvinner/artikkel.php?artid=10111937
« Last Edit: July 05, 2013, 10:42:03 PM by Alan »
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Offline Alan

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Pellerud struggles to explain the loss
« Reply #82 on: July 06, 2013, 04:08:36 PM »
"I'm very worried, and I have no clear answers now", said Norway's trainer Even Pellerud.

The match should have brought good feelings to the team in the runup to the European Cup.  Now the trainer is left with new unanswered questions after the friendly against Russia.  "I don't know who will start the opening match against Iceland.  I got no clear answers in this match", said a surprised Pellerud.

In the preparations Norway's team has shown good trends even though the results have not been decisive.  In Friday's match the performances and the result were under par.  "I am very worried over what I saw.  This isn't how we played earlier in the year.  It was a performance that is not worthy of us", was how the trainer summed up the match.

He described good training sessions leading up to the match with good performances and a confident air.  Friday's match came as a big and unwelcome surprise.  "We must first evaluate the match.  I need some time to think it through", he said.  Without any answers he is uncertain how to turn things round.  "We need to think and discuss it rationally.  Then we'll see what the trouble is", said the trainer.

Ada Hegerberg did not play and has an injured left thigh.  "We don't know how it is yet", said the chief.  Hegerberg has been doing alternative training and receiving treatment.  The medical team hopes to have her ready for the opening match against Iceland. 

"Elise Thorsnes looked a little more recovered again.  It was good for her to play 45 minutes, perhaps she needs 60 minutes next time and then we will have alternatives for the strikers", said Pellerud.

Norway started the match well and pressed high for ten minutes, quickly winning the ball, and this led to the first goal by Caroline Graham Hansen.  Two minutes later Russia came forward and a player was able to put the ball past Ingrid Hjelmseth from six yards.  In the second half Hansen put Norway into the lead again but the visitors came back quickly with an equaliser and then they went ahead with a penalty that was saved once by Hjelmseth who could not take
the shot off the return.

"Just now I am terribly disappointed.  I still think we can reach our goal of the semifinals but now we must play a lot better than this", said Norway's best player, Caroline Graham Hansen. 

Mette Bjerkaas http://www.adressa.no/100Sport/fotball/kvinner/article380584.snd
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Offline Alan

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Problems for Hegerberg
« Reply #83 on: July 08, 2013, 09:07:08 PM »
Norway's striker Ada Stolsmo Hegerberg (18 on Wednesday) has a thigh injury that is giving Even Pellerud problems in team selection.  "Ada Hegerberg is a topic we are not certain about, and it's a race against the clock before Thursday's opening match at the European Cup", he said.

The team is in Sweden for the final preparations and the Turbine Potsdam professional is not guaranteed to start against Iceland.  "We have to be prepared for the thigh not to be ready, but there will be more matches and new opportunities.  The most important thing is for the thigh to recover", said Hegerberg.  At Monday's training session in Kalmar Hegerberg did not join the rest of the squad and instead did some light jogging and had a session with Norway's physio.  On Tuesday she expects to join a normal session for the first time in a week. 

Good news for Pellerud is that Elise Thorsnes is in better shape than for a long time and could be in the starting eleven on Thursday.  "She has done a very good job and is keeping in fine form in what has been a long injury period.  It has been a tough winter and spring for Elise but she is looking better.  She is a good alternative for the striker place", said Pellerud.

Norway has lost the two latest training matches against France and Russia.  "The team must turn this round into something positive.  It has been a good process and we have made some small changes, nothing radical, but perhaps to simplify the structure and build the players' confidence up again", said the trainer.  In the training matches Noray used many substitutes, but that does not indicate uncertainty over picking the team.  "The substitutions were made just to give as many as possible match time.  There is no uncertainty and there has been hard competition for places", he said.

He is happy with the environment in Kalmar.  "We could not have a better place here.  We feel very welcome, almost the host nation, with good support from local people.  Not least, the training ground is world-class", said Even Pellerud.     

Anders Mjaaland http://www.nrk.no/sport/denne-jenta-skaper-hodebry-1.11122461
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Offline Alan

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Norway has a lot to live up to
« Reply #84 on: July 09, 2013, 09:20:31 AM »
The European Cup finals start on Wednesday and Norway's team has some strong results from former years to defend, having been in the semifinals in eight of the previous nine tournaments.

The only failure was at home in 1997 when Norway went out in the group.  In 2005 they reached the Final with a classic 3-2 win over Sweden in extra time, but hopes were dashed by a 3-1 defeat by Germany who have won the last five European Cup competitions.  The last time a team broke Germany's domination was twenty years ago when Even Pellerud's team overcame Italy in the Final.

In 1995, the last time Sweden organised a major women's football tournament, Pellerud took Norway to the World Cup Final where they beat Germany at Råsunda.  It's perhaps too much to expect Norway to reach the Final again this time on July 28, because the team has not looked like champions in recent months, losing their last four matches after a promising start to the year when they won a four-nations championship in China.

Norway starts the group phase with a match against Iceland, their opponents in the last match in qualification.  The next opponents are Netherlands, before Norway meets the Cup holders Germany.  By that time both teams might have secured advancement to the quarter finals.  The top two in each group go forward, also the two best third-placed teams.

Norway will be hoping for a better result against Iceland than the 3-1 defeat in the first qualification match in the autumn of 2011.  It meant that they had to struggle all through the qualification campaign, until finally they beat Iceland 2-1 at Ullevaal in the last of the qualification matches.

On Wednesday the tournament starts with two matches: Italy meets Finland in the opening match, but most attention will be on Sweden's duel with Denmark at the Gamla Ullevi stadium in Gothenburg.  Norway's group matches will all be in the south-eastern city of Kalmar on the Baltic, while the others in the group will also try the other pitch at Växjö.  Germany meets Netherlands there on Thursday a few hours after Norway's first match.

All the Nordic countries are in groups A and B.  On Friday group C begins, when France meets Russia and England meets Spain.  

NTB http://www.adressa.no/100Sport/fotball/kvinner/article381052.snd

Norway's debutantes were put to the test after the squad's first training session in Sweden.  By tradition new players in the squad have to kick a penalty - after they have run round a ball ten times with one hand on the ball.  On Monday a slightly injured Ada Hegerberg was the referee when Caroline Graham Hansen, Nora Gjøen, Cathrine Dekkerhus and Melissa Bjånesøy went through the test.  Bjånesøy had just finished a chocolate milk shake and was tricked into doing three or four extra turns.  "It went down, now it's on the way up", she said.
Video: http://www.tv2.no/sport/fotball/her-gaar-det-rundt-for-ferskingene-4085197.html
« Last Edit: July 15, 2013, 11:26:16 AM by Alan »
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Offline Alan

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Norway's reserve keeper at the European Cup.
« Reply #85 on: July 09, 2013, 03:27:03 PM »
Before Christmas a 30-year-old accountant sat in Oslo looking over her life to date and decided the time had come for her to become an international footballer - three years after she had retired from Toppserien football.  Now Silje Vesterbekkmo is with the squad in Sweden.

"I must say I am very pleased with what I have done in only six months", said Vesterbekkmo with a smile.  She has perhaps the strangest history of all in the Norwegian squad.

Having reached 30 she took stock last Christmas.  "There were two things I regretted: not having studied in another country, and never making it to international level when I was an active player", she said.  "Both targets looked a little out of reach, but I decided to do something about the second of them".

She was not only aiming for international football but also wanted to be good enough for the European Cup, but had only a few months to achieve it.  She phoned her old trainer, Geir Nordby, and asked if she could train with the team to see if she was good enough to have a place.  He invited her to join in.

Vesterbekkmo works as an accountant in a firm in Oslo, and it did not take long for her colleagues to notice that something was happening.  "I had to explain why I had suddenly started to do a lot more training.  They were surprised when I told them about my project", she said.  "When I told them I was aiming to play for Norway at the European Cup they asked if I had played for the national team before.  I had to say I had not, and there were a few blinks at that".

"I got up to train at six every morning, then I worked a few hours and trained again, and back to work again.  There were some long days", she said.  After a few matches for Røa there came the call she had been waiting for: Even Pellerud had followed her progress and wanted her to join the squad.

"At that moment I only knew her as a name, as it was so long since she had played.  But I liked what I saw of her goalkeeping at the Røa matches", said Pellerud.  Vesterbekkmo stood in goal against Switzerland and Pellerud felt afterwards that she was good enough for a place in the Euro suad.  "I didn't know that was her target, but I thought she was good enough", said the trainer.

He is also impressed with the work the 30-year-old has put in.  "I didn't know she was out of training when she decided to go for this, but it is really impressive", he said.

Vesterbekkmo emphasizes that she has no real expectations of match time at the championship.  Since the last European Cup Ingrid Hjelmseth has been Norway's established goalkeeper.  "I am not really hoping for match time because that would mean that Ingrid was injured.  I am here for the experience, and look at it as the world's best summer holiday", she said.    

Yasmin Sunde Hoel http://www.nrk.no/sport/fotball/keeperen-rett-til-em-etter-comeback-1.11103983?utm_source=twitterfeed&utm_medium=twitter

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« Last Edit: July 09, 2013, 03:32:41 PM by Alan »
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Offline Alan

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Ada fit to play
« Reply #86 on: July 09, 2013, 10:58:31 PM »
Ada Stolsmo Hegerberg was at last able to play football again on Tuesday and has been declared fit to play against Iceland on Thursday.

Ever since Hegerberg took a thigh strain a week ago the trainers have been uncertain whether she would be available, and she has done alternative training.  She trained normally today and felt no pain in the thigh, so is considered available for the opening match of the European Cup.

"All praise to the medical team, which has worked hard to make me fit.  It's looking good today and I am very happy", said a sprightly Hegerberg to NFF-TV.  Norway has an injury-free squad to pick from.  

Mathias Tjøtta Odden http://www.fotball.no/Landslag_og_toppfotball/Landslag/A-kvinner/2013/Hegerberg-klar-for-kamp/
NFF-TV is blocked to viewers outside Norway

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« Last Edit: July 09, 2013, 11:06:48 PM by Alan »
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Offline Alan

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Norway-Iceland on Eurosport
« Reply #87 on: July 10, 2013, 08:21:04 PM »
Thursday's opening match for Norway and Iceland in the European Cup is on Eurosport, starting at 17.00.

Norway is ready: Norway's team is ready for battle against a physically good Iceland at the beautiful Kalmar Arena on Thursday.

On Wednesday the squad trained on the grass pitch where all their group matches will be played.  Norway's playes have good memories of previous contests with the Icelanders, most recently a 2-1 win at Ullevaal in Oslo last September.  "We have taken them before, we will take them again", predicted defensive ace Marit Fiane Christensen to NFF TV.

Mathias Tjøtta Odden http://www.fotball.no/Landslag_og_toppfotball/Landslag/A-kvinner/2013/Klare-for-krig/
(NFF-TV is blocked to viewers outside Norway)
« Last Edit: July 10, 2013, 10:23:44 PM by Alan »
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Offline Alan

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Ada's birthday present
« Reply #88 on: July 10, 2013, 10:56:25 PM »
"Right! I'll be serious now for the rest of the interview", said Norway's youngest player, Ada Stolsmo Hegerberg, talking to TV2.no on her 18th birthday, Wednesday.  But she couldn't manage it.  She was with some of Norway's squad at a street cafe in Kalmar, Sweden, and she opened an interesting and unusual present.  See the video:
http://www.tv2.no/sport/fotball/derfor-fikk-landslagsjentene-latterkrampe-4086138.html
« Last Edit: July 10, 2013, 11:10:52 PM by Alan »
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Offline Alan

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"A championship team" - Mjelde
« Reply #89 on: July 11, 2013, 09:30:37 AM »
Maren Mjelde is not worried about Norway's losses in the last seven matches.  Today in Kalmar at 18.00 the team faces Iceland, and yesterday they put the finishing touches to their form on the fine grass pitch at Guldfågeln Arena.  

Mjelde plays as a professional at Turbine Potsdam.  She says they should not worry about the defeats.  At the 2009 Euros in Finland the team was in a similar situation, which she can remember well.  That time they had a famous win over Sweden in the quarter finals before losing in the semis to Germany.  "You shouldn't just look at this year's results because Norway has always been a championship team.  The losses give us an even stronger will to win", she said.

Mjelde is only 23 but has had a lot of experience since the age of 17 when she was the captain of Norway's Under-19s.  She successfully captained the team last year in qualification for this tournament in Ingvild Stensland's absence through injury.  She is pleased to see veterans like Solveig Gulbrandsen and Marit Fiane Christensen back in the red shirt, while youngsters like Caroline Graham Hansen and Ada Hegerberg are coming up.  "This squad has a good mix, better than we have had before.  It's a good blend of players".  She knows today's opponents well.  Iceland were in the same group for qualification, and each team won a match against each other but Norway won the group.  "If we are sharp enough we will beat them", she said.

Ingvild Stensland says the same.  "Before, we beat Iceland easily, but a lot of them have improved very much.  But we are still better than them", said the skipper.

Chief trainer Even Pellerud has all 21 players free of injury for his team selection today.  "I think we have managed to forget the Russia match.  It hasn't affected the players' confidence", he said.

The Kalmar stadium was opened two years ago for the Swedish men's team Kalmar FF which plays in the Allsvenskan league, and has 10,900 places. For today's match 2500 tickets have been sold. The match can be seen in the UK on Eurosport starting at 17.00.

Kim Bøyum http://beta.bt.no/100Sport/fotball/kvinner/--Vi-er-et-mesterskapslag-381355_1.snd#.Ud5nPEFwogE  
« Last Edit: July 11, 2013, 09:36:46 AM by Alan »
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Offline Alan

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Hansen looking forward
« Reply #90 on: July 11, 2013, 10:02:10 AM »
Caroline Graham Hansen has been described as Norway's biggest football talent, but she feels no pressure.  "No, I don't feel pressure.  I am relaxed about it and try to have fun with football, and I think dribbling is huge fun", said the 18-year-old, who is in the second year at NTG, Norway's top sports high-school.  

Her technical skills have come from a good combination of talent and training.  "I have played lot in boys' teams, and have always spent time with the ball, and I think this comes naturally.  "I don't know why I chose football, but my dad has played football so it's in the family, but it was also slightly accidental".  She likes golf as an alternative.  "I have always said I would like to be good at tennis, but I don't know if I would have chosen that.  I really think it would have been golf", she said.

Offers have come in from foreign clubs but she is relaxed about it and says the time is not right.  "I haven't found the right moment to go yet.  I am thriving at Stabæk so it feels right to play there now.  In five years time I hope to be playing in a club with some of the world's best players and contributing a lot to that club.  We'll see what happens but I must keep working hard", she said.  "There are so many great folk here and I really thrive on it".  In 2011 and 2012 they won the Cup, a convincing 4-0 win last year but a narrow win after extra time and penalties in 2011.  

Hansen debuted in the national team as a 16-year-old.  "I feel I have a lot to contribute", she said.  She mentions a few of her idols.  "I really like watching Ronaldo and Messi and what they do with the ball.  Also there are people I look up to at Stabæk.  Katrine Pedersen is always at the front, and Trine Rønning as well.  There are people who have always been at the club and you can learn a lot from them at training, psychologically, in skills, understanding the play, smartness and so on.  So you always have someone to look up to and being at Stabæk is a very positive experience", said Caroline Graham Hansen.

Andreas Kristoffer Berge http://akbnews.files.wordpress.com/2013/06/kvinnefotball_ferdig.pdf    
« Last Edit: July 11, 2013, 09:46:04 PM by Alan »
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Offline Alan

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Norway 1 Iceland 1
« Reply #91 on: July 11, 2013, 04:41:17 PM »
Iceland took their first-ever point in an international championship after a well deserved late goal against a Norway that tried and failed to hang on to their lead in the last 20 minutes.  

Norway used a somewhat makeshift team.  Maren Mjelde played her first-ever match at right back while the scorer Kristine Hegland played at right-back in midweek against Russia but today went up into her other habitual position on the left wing.  Hegland plays in the midfield in club football.  

Norway played a solid first half and finished it with a 1-0 lead after a goal in the 26th minute by Kristine Hegland, assisted by Ingrid Hjelmseth.  Hegland took a clearance from the keeper forward and went through the defence, and although Iceland's keeper got a foot to the ball it hit a post and went in.

In the final half-hour Iceland took over control of the match.  Good defending by Marit Fiane Christensen and keeper Hjelmseth kept them out as Norway met Iceland's increasingly confident attacks.  The pattern from the Russia match was repeated as more and more of Norway's passes were intercepted and loose balls seemed to find an Iceland player every time.  An equaliser looked more and more likely until, three minutes from the end, the penalty was conceded.  The penalty itself was a dubious decision by the referee but by then the writing was on the wall and and Icelandic goal looked inevitable.

Norway 1 Iceland 1, European Cup group B, Guldfågeln Arena, Kalmar, July 11 2013.
Spectators: 3867
Yellow cards: Hólmfridur Magnúsdóttir, Marit Fiane Christensen
Goals: 1-0 Kristine Hegland (26), 1-1 Margrét Lára Vidarsdóttir (pen.) 87.

Norway:
Ingrid Hjelmseth -
Maren Mjelde, Trine Rønning, Marit Fiane Christensen, Toril Akerhaugen -
Solveig Gulbrandsen, Ingvild Isaksen, Ingvild Stensland (Lene Mykjåland 75) -
Caroline Graham Hansen (Leni Larsen Kaurin 84), Ada Stolsmo Hegerberg (Elise Thorsnes 75), Kristine Hegland.

From Andrine Hegerberg: crazy to see Mjelde playing as a back when she has been so good in the midfield in the Bundesleague!
Caroline Knutsen: we should have controlled this, Andrine!! hopeless choice . . 
« Last Edit: July 12, 2013, 04:45:09 PM by Alan »
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Offline Alan

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Hegland minutes from being the hero
« Reply #92 on: July 12, 2013, 09:12:27 AM »
Kristine Hegland was smiling last night even though Norway had points taken from them by Iceland at the end of the match.  "It was tough to drop points at the end.  Just now I am disappointed", said the 20-year-old from Arna-Bjørnar, but scoring a goal at the European Cup is something that not everyone gets to experience.

"Great fun.  It was a delight to see the ball go in.  It is the most important goal of my career", Hegland told bt.no, without wanting to overstate her achievement.  For the first twenty minutes her play was virtually faultless.  Then she showed in two ways why she has become a fixture in Norway's team.  First she put in an iron-hard tackle on the right that stopped an Icelandic counterattack in the embryo state.  Straight away she was speeding forward when a long clearance from Ingrid Hjelmseth soared over the field.  First to the ball was Hegland, who ran up into the penalty area, threw herself forward and put the ball past keeper Gudbjörg Gunnarsdottir.

The Bergen player was given much praise after the match.  "A typical Hegland goal.  She runs for everything, works at everything.  There is a lot of talk about Ada Hegerberg and Caroline Graham Hansen, but Kris is a huge talent as well and she was the one who stood out today", said teammate Solveig Gulbrandsen to NTB.

There was surprise when Norway's team was announced, but Even Pellerud thought that Hegland earned her place.  "The goal was a fantastic performance with guts and skill.  This girl gives a hundred per cent", said the trainer.  He has had no doubts about her place in the starting eleven.  "She has been a fixture ever since the first match in January", he said.

Kristine Hegland said she had been nervous at the start.  "I was very nervous and made some bad passes, but I know how to get myself out of that", she said.  "We can take a lot of good things from this match.  In the first half we were very good and I have big hopes of progressing further", she said.

Maren Mjelde was pushed out to right-back to make a place for Marit Fiane Christensen beside Trine Rønning in the central defence.  Mjelde has spent the year so far successfully as a defensive midfielder at Turbine Potsdam but has nearly always been a centre-back in the national team.  Now she has a new position to get used to.  "I have never played there before, and I am absolutely not pleased with my own performance", she said.

But she was delighted with Hegland's goal.  The two have played many years together in the midfield at Arna-Bjørnar.  "A really good goal.  She is dangerous in a forward position and it's great to see", said Maren Mjelde.          

Kim Bøyum / NTB http://beta.bt.no/100Sport/fotball/kvinner/Hegland-var-minutter-fra-a-bli-Norges-store-helt-381582_1.snd

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« Last Edit: July 12, 2013, 07:18:07 PM by Alan »
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Offline Alan

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"Positive trends" - Finjord
« Reply #93 on: July 12, 2013, 06:12:11 PM »
After the 1-1 draw with Iceland the Norwegian team is looking to build further with a good performance against Netherlands on Sunday.

There was disppointment in the Norway camp when Iceland kicked the equaliser at Kalmar Arena on Thursday.  On Friday the team has been looking through the match video at their hotel and the performance gives some reasons for optimism.

"The first half was definitely a good performance.  We played with low risks in defence and several times went the right way in the open spaces.  There is work to do on the timing of crosses and the mobility, which meant that we did not manage to finish several attacks.  There is a lot to take forward here, as we saw at the video meeting.  We have a lot of belief on what lies in store for us at the tournament", said assistant trainer Roger Finjord.

He led today's training session in sunny Kalmar.  Reserves from the Iceland match played on the small pitch while those who were still tired recovered with spin cycling.  Norway's next match is against Netherlands, who drew against Germany on Thursday.  "We have people who watched the Netherlands-Germany match and we have a good idea of the challenges they present.  We know the quality in our team and we see that the girls are really anxious to bring out their full potential.  Now we must do just that.  If we can beat Netherlands there is a good chance we can go to the knockout phase", he said.

One of Norway's team who stood out in Thursday's match was midfield veteran Solveig Gulbrandsen.  Having had time to put the match in perpective she is more disappointed with the result than the performance.  "You are disappointed not to win.  Three points at the start of a tournament would have been great.  But the performance itself is nothing to be too disappointed with.  We played a very good first half and created many chances.  Relative to recent matches I think it was a good match", said Gulbrandsen.

On her own form she said, "I think it was ok but it was obviously difficult out there.  You run a lot but apart from that I was pleased to have a lot of ball possession because it's a while since I have played at international level.  I had several combinations with Caro (Graham Hansen) so it was a delight to get to work", said Gulbrandsen.

She is already thinking about the match against Netherlands.  "Clearly we must play several notches better.  It will be a different match and we must be better defensively and be more cynical.  And we must sink the chances we get.  The chances we created against Iceland can also come against Netherlands and Germany", she said.

She is the only player who played in the historic Olympic final in Sydney in 2000.  She says it's difficult to compare the two squads but
mentioned the similarity.  "Norwegian teams are very good as teams and it's the same now.  They have a great team morale and that's where the similarities are.  This gang has a great time and stands together as a team", said Solveig Gulbrandsen.   

Mathias Tjøtta Odden http://www.fotball.no/Landslag_og_toppfotball/Landslag/A-kvinner/2013/-Mye-positivt-a-ta-tak-i/
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Offline Alan

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"Shivers all over" - Isaksen
« Reply #94 on: July 12, 2013, 07:37:23 PM »
Ingvild Isaksen was in Norway's starting eleven on Thursday for the match against Iceland after a good defensive midfield performance against Russia last week.

Opposite her was her Kolbotn teammate, Fanndis Fridriksdottir.  "It was great to play against Fanndis.  It was good that she also started the match, but a bit disappointing that we had to share the points.  But it was really fun to play against Fanndis", she told FotballMagasinet after Friday's training session.

Before the championship Isaksen had said that she was aiming for a place in the starting eleven.  "It was great, and I felt all over that it would be quite a different match from what I am used to playing.  I had the shivers all over.  It's fantastic to get to work in a big tournament because I have been really excited about it for a long time", she said.

She thinks that a lot of positives came from the match despite Iceland's late equaliser.  "The first half was one of our beat for a long time and we went in with a really good feeling at half time, so it's a pity that it it didn't go well in the second half.  We have made it a bit more difficult for ourselves but we can still take points", said Kolbotn's skipper.

Now they will meet the Netherlands, a team that last night surprised Germany with a 0-0 draw.  "I thought they were better than the Germans in the second half.  They were very good so it will be tough.  We will have to work very hard to get live with them", said Isaksen.  The match is on Sunday.

In the last group match Norway will meet Germany on Wednesday next week.  "I have heard that they have had a few injuries and have a very young squad, but I believe Germany will get better and better with every match they play.  It's a bit of a pity we have them in the last group match, it won't be an easy match whatever happens", said Ingvild Isaksen.

Andreas Kristoffer Berge http://fotballmagasinet.no/?mode=news&id=26603

Photos from Friday's training match: https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.535215396546437.1073741905.158611120873535&type=3
« Last Edit: July 12, 2013, 07:55:21 PM by Alan »
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Offline Alan

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'Uncertain' - Hegerberg
« Reply #95 on: July 13, 2013, 03:39:51 PM »
Kalmar: Ada Stolsmo Hegerberg (18) was not in top form in the opening match of the European Cup.  The chief thinks she must try to be tougher.

Hegerberg had a chance to settle the match before Iceland's equaliser, but could not find the way to the net.  At Friday's training session a short distance outside the centre of sun-filled Kalmar the striker had a chat with Even Pellerud.

"He thinks I should keep the ball more and use my strength more.  I think I am short of goals and was only partly satisfied with my performance.  I know I have a lot more in me than I could bring out", said the Turbine Potsdam professional to VG.  "I felt unsure right through the match.  If I had been in top 'Ada-form' I would have scored.  There was was a bit of 'Ada-magic' lacking.  I have been half and half for a week now so am feeling a bit unsure.  Now I know I am on the way back and it's really nothing to worry about".

"And what is 'Ada-magic'?" - "Being deadly on every chance I get", Hegerberg answered.  

Toughness and a deadly shot is just what Pellerud wants from his striker.  "Ada has an extreme talent in coming round and reaching a shooting position.  The more she does that the happier I will be.  She must do more of that rather than giving supporting passes.  It's all about having the speed and confidence to do things herself", said Pellerud.  "She created two or three big chances on her own and was involved with the goal.  She did her job there".

Hegerberg struggled with a thigh strain in the days before the tournament started and was unable to take part in the full training programme.  "Had I had a better runup this week I believe I would have taken my chances.  I am going to put full focus on the next match because the chances will come", she said.

Norway's 4-3-3 formation means that Hegerberg often has difficult working conditions at the front.  "With the way we play my job is to be strong up at the top and win as many duels as possible.  Then I will take more advantage of the chances that come", said Ada Stolsmo Hegerberg.  

Jon Martin Henriksen http://www.vg.no/sport/fotball/artikkel.php?artid=10105003

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Offline Alan

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Dreams of professional football
« Reply #96 on: July 13, 2013, 04:06:36 PM »
Good play at the European Cup could open many doors for Ingrid Ryland and Kristine Hegland.  They both dream about playing professionally.

While the Toppserien at home has taken a break the two Arna-Bjørnar players are in Sweden to fight for a medal.  Bygdanytt met the two excited players a few days before they left for the event of the year.

"We feel very lucky to be going, but at the same time we have worked terribly hard for it", said Hegland.  Both she and Ryland look forward to the big championship and obviously hope for a lot of playing time.  But it could be easier said than done to meet both players' dreams, because when one is playing the other sits on the bench.  They compete for the right-back position in Norway's starting eleven.

"We think it's a bit disappointing because we are best friends and roommates and play in the same team.  Obviously we should both be playing in a big championship", said Ryland.

"How about sabotage?" - "hehe, I couldn't think of it.  Kristine deserves all the match time she gets", said Ryland.  "It looks as if Kris is the most likely starter.  She has started the most training matches and generally has more match time.  It's an exciting duel but this is a continual choice that the chief has to make.  Neither of us begrudges the other any match time".

The chief emphasizes that it will be a running decision from match to match.  "Both of them are smart players who know how to play their role in the team.  I don't know who will start the opening match myself", said Even Pellerud to Bygdanytt.

He is in no doubt that both of them have many positive qualities.  "Kristine Hegland can play in several positions and is a player I know I can bank on.  Ryland is the most likely for right-back.  She is an attacking player who is good at finding space, and is undoubtedly a player I want to see at the European Cup", said the trainer.

Preben Vik http://www.bygdanytt.no/sport/Drommer-om-profflivet-51750.html

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« Last Edit: July 13, 2013, 08:43:46 PM by Alan »
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Offline Alan

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Norway-Netherlands on Sunday
« Reply #97 on: July 13, 2013, 08:53:15 PM »
Kickoff at 17.00 - live on Eurosport.
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Offline Alan

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Norway 1 Netherlands 0
« Reply #98 on: July 14, 2013, 07:01:31 PM »
Norway played a much better match this afternoon using an unchanged starting eleven after the draw against Iceland.  

The first half was evenly played by the two teams with Norway's forward progress helped by Maren Mjelde in only her second-ever match at right-back, with quality showing in the speed with which she learned the new position.  

After half time Norway continued to press and Solveig Gulbrandsen scored the only goal of the match in the 54th minute with a shot from just outside the corner of the six-yard box that veered off the underside of the bar and into the back of the net.  "A goal from nowhere", said Lise Klaveness on TV.  Big chances went to Marit Fiane Christensen who had a header cleared off the Dutch line in the first half, and in the second half had a header on a post after a cross by Caroline Graham Hansen, who also had a shot of her own stopped by the crossbar.

Netherlands threw everything into the hunt for an equaliser in the final ten minutes but Norway scrambled to defend and managed to hold out for the three points that took them to the top of group B, helped by Ingrid Hjelmseth with a matchwinning performance in goal.

Goal-scorer Solveig Gulbrandsen was watched from the stands by husband Espen and baby Lilly, no doubt Theodor as well, while Cecilie Dekkerhus was there with the division-1 team from Kongsvinger to see big sister Cathrine run out in the second half.  Emma Hayes of Eurosport picked the players of the match, the Norwegian centre-backs Christensen and Rønning.  So Norway were led by the over-30s today, the day before Even Pellerud celebrates his 60th birthday.  

Norway 1 Netherland 0 (0-0), European Cup group B, Guldfågeln Arena, Kalmar, July 14 2013.
Spectators:
Referee: Teodora Albon, Romania
Goal: 1-0 Solveig Gulbrandsen 54.

Norway:
Ingrid Hjelmseth -
Maren Mjelde, Trine Rønning, Marit Fiane Christensen, Toril Akerhaugen -
Solveig Gulbrandsen (Cathrine Høegh Dekkerhus 73), Ingvild Isaksen, Ingvild Stensland -
Caroline Graham Hansen (Elise Thorsnes 80), Ada Stolsmo Hegerberg (Melissa Bjånesøy 72), Kristine Hegland.

Nederland (4-2-3-1): Loes Geurts – Dyanne Bito, Daphne Koster, Anouk Hoogendijk, Claudia van den Heiligenberg – Renée Slegers, Sherida Spitse – Kirsten van de Ven, Danielle van de Donk, Lieke Martens – Manon Melis.

See the goal on NRK: http://www.nrk.no/sport/fotball/gulbrandsen-senket-nederland-1.11132480
« Last Edit: July 15, 2013, 11:43:06 AM by Alan »
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Offline striker1

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Re: European Cup 2013
« Reply #99 on: July 14, 2013, 07:51:51 PM »
Well Done Norway.
A brilliant defensive display from the "best back four in the competition" according to British Eurosport commentators
Great display also from Ingrid "the worlds best goalkeeper".