Southampton/Oslo (VG) On Saturday, this team could write the history of Norwegian football. The little girls are ready for the finals at U19-EM for the first time since Carolyn Graham Hansen & Company. He lost heavily in 2011.
A tightly knit band. Everyone hangs out with everyone. It’s really cool to see how they work, coach Heiji Reese told VG from the Czech Republic.
Saturday afternoon, Spain awaits in Ostrava. Norway has never won the European Championships or the World Cup in age-specific football.
– It’s great to have Team J19 in the final again, says Caroline Graham Hansen after the inaugural win over Northern Ireland in the Seniors Championship.
Girls in England closely followed the growing success of the youngsters.
– It’s great, says Guru Ritten, who was with us all the way to the Junior Final in 2011.
In addition to Graham Hansen and Ritten, Ada Hegerberg, Maria Thorsdottir and Anya Sonstefold lost the final 1-8 to Germany.
– Are you going to tear it up, Graham Hansen laughs.
– We can hope things go a little better than they did in the final, says Ritten.
But an entire generation of national team players has grown up from difficult experience. Hege Riise thinks something similar could come from the 19th girls’ national team today
– Sure can. She says you get the best references by being in a tournament and have a good club life with the development.
– It’s a good dose of work that needs to be done so they can stand here – like us. Guru Ritten from England says they have all the prerequisites for success.
Spain now awaits the European Championship final, having defeated France 1-0 in the semi-finals.
It will be difficult to face Spain, but now you have the chance when all the major countries play the U-20 World Cup. There are many better players. Now we have a chance to take J19’s gold. “I really hope they take the chance and seize this win,” says Barcelona star Caroline Graham Hansen.
It aims for major countries such as France, Germany and Spain to prioritize the U-20 World Cup in August.
Hege Riise (188 caps) was mostly a player and coach. But I have not met Spain.
– It’s Spanish football with possession and a change of place. For us, it doesn’t matter if we get nervous if we don’t have the ball, you think.
The young girls showed character after they went on a frenzy with the 1-4 loss to England in their opening match.
– Behind the result, there was a lot of positivity. Heig Reis explains that the only thing we did was strengthen him.
After that, the team achieved three consecutive victories without conceding a goal: 2-0 against Germany before defeating Sweden 1-0 in the last group match. Thursday’s semi-final tipped towards Norway after an own goal from favorites France. All scores came after the first half.
– Instead of a stick, there was a rod for us. It’s not luck or bad luck. We’ve found the right balance between stress level and tactics. Reese describes that such small margins exist.
Colbotten’s goalkeeper, Selma Banningsteen, made a collective rescue when the French girls pressed for the worst.
– This class rescue. There are small margins internationally, as Guru Ritten describes.
Offensively, players like Lyns Cathinka Tandberg (1 goal) and Iris Omarsdottir of Stabæk (2 goals) played central. Tandberg set the post and Omarsdottir pressed hard as France sealed the semi-final by putting the ball in their own possession.
– He was aware that we put Eris down when they were starting to get tired, Reyes explains that Omarsdottir sat on the bench from the start for the first time in the European Championship. Only six players started all matches. Norway deliberately used 17 of the 20 players at the top.
– What is the value of going to the tournament?
– They gain experience in close matches and test the international level at a fighting pace every three days. They have to adapt and restore self-restraint after loss and victory. Players are pressed. Plus, it’s all in between: being together for a long time and being away from home for a long time, says Heig Reis, who was himself an expert at the tournament, where Norway won the 2000 Olympics, the 1995 World Championships, and the European Championships in 1993.
European Championship Final Norway-Spain, NRK1 on Saturday at 15.00
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