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  • Matt Codd

Sweden v Netherlands: Sheffield shows it knows how to do Football


Sheffield. Arguably the birthplace of football as we know it today. The home to the oldest football club in the world, and the oldest professional football stadium, is helping to usher in a new era for the game as a host city for the UEFA Women’s Euros 2022 in England.


The city will play host to four games across the tournament, with neighbouring town Rotherham also hosting four games, including a semi-final. It’s a match made in football heaven, a trailblazing city playing host to trailblazing individuals.


That could not have been more evident than in Saturday’s match between Sweden and Netherlands. It had been billed as a dress-rehearsal for the final beforehand: Sweden were ranked 2nd in the world entering the tournament and Netherlands won the previous edition as the host nation.


The approach to the stadium was abuzz with a sea of blue, yellow, and orange as fans from both nations streamed into Bramall Lane on a glorious evening. Both countries had incredible representation from their fans in the ground and the atmosphere was unbelievable as both sets vied for supremacy with their bands and voices.


The game itself was a cagey affair, being the first game of both nation’s respective tournaments, and both teams being favourites to qualify from group C. They seemed to play with more of a “can’t lose” attitude as opposed to a “must win”, but it was an engaging contest, nonetheless.


Sweden dominated possession for most of the game and netted the first goal after a brilliant nutmeg (right in front of us) and cutback from Real Madrid’s Kosvare Asllami for Jonna Andersson to finish. Their exceptional passing and movement caused Netherlands problems all day long, but the holders finally struck after half time, when Arsenal’s superstar forward Vivianne Miedema broke forward and slid in Jill Roord to fire home an equaliser.

Sweden were unlucky not to come away with the 3 points that their performance deserved but that didn’t stop their fans cheering every move, and preventing every Mexican wave attempt from getting past them. Miedema thoroughly deserved her man of the match award though, she was by far the best player on the pitch, it felt like she was dragging the Dutch forwards at times.


Sheffield was clearly an inspired pick as a host city. The attendance of 21,342 was a new record for the competition for a game not featuring the host nation. The tournament itself has been incredible to watch and it has brought the city to life. You can’t go anywhere on matchday without seeing fans from either team enjoying the rare sunshine in a beer garden. It’s a fantastic showcase for the city but also for the country and even the world. Sheffield is incredibly lucky to be able to host these inspiring teams, and their incredible fans, even if it is just for the next few weeks.


2 則留言


prsenlac
2022年7月16日

Excellent write up,a great read.

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midwifesally
2022年7月16日

Great start guys! Good luck with the mag and all you want to achieve

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