Women’s World Cup: Norway Frustrate Germany

Norway’s display against Germany in the Women’s World Cup was enough to earn a draw. Facing the highly rated German team, this must be considered a very good result for the Norwegian girls. German goalkeeper Nadine Angerer stated that Norway were a very annoying side to play against, with the Norwegians’ cynical style of play frustrating the Germans.

The first half of the game was controlled by the Germans in every aspect. They went up 1-0 after only six minutes, thanks to a close range goal from Anja Mittag. Everything seemed to be going their way, with Norway playing rather poorly. Norway had trouble keeping the ball, and misplaced many passes. Norway were lucky only to be 1-0 down at half-time.

After the break, there was a totally different Norway on the pitch. Norwegian coach, Even Pellerud, said that this was due to a very tough half-time talk. Norway disrupted the German style of play, and sat deep to prevent the Germans from creating more goalscoring opportunities. Instead, Norway’s Maren Mjelde converted a free kick in the 61st minute in what must be considered the best goal of the tournament so far. Mjelde, who missed a penalty in the opening match, was thrilled to make amends in such an important game.

For the rest of the match, Norway kept their defensive and frustrated Germany. A draw was an almost perfect result for Norway with regards to which opponent they would face in the first knock-out round. Both teams are certainly through to the next round after this result, but both would also like to avoid playing France in the second stage, with the French women also being one of the favourites to win the World Cup.

With their toughest test of the tournament so far behind them, Norway can now look ahead. With this result, chances of succeeding in the tournament have increased a lot. Norway have proven they are up to the task against the very best teams. With as much as 6-10 teams all having a decent chance of winning the tournament, Norway are definitely one of them.

Norway will face Ivory Coast in the last match of the group stage. Ivory Coast were crushed 10-0 by Germany in their first match, and should be an easy match for Norway. Even Thailand beat Ivory Coast 3-2 earlier today. This will also give coach Pellerud a chance to regroup and rotate the squad.

One of the players who may then be rested in the match against Ivory Coast this coming Monday is striker Ada Stolsmo Hegerberg. Hegerberg will probably be a vital part of Norway’s continued chances in the World Cup. She may also face a ban in that match, being caught on camera calling the referee a derogatory term. However, Hegerberg may escape punishment from FIFA if the incident is viewed as a moment of humour.

Norway’s chances are now being increasingly watched by the football crowd in Norway, where many are hoping for a re-run of the 1995 World Cup. Chances are now bigger than before the tournament, and hopes of the Vikings’ second coming are looking more and more likely.