Swedish women cruise into Euro quarter-finals

Swedish women cruise into Euro quarter-finals
A second-half goal explosion secured hosts Sweden a place in the quarter-finals as they beat Italy 3-1 on Tuesday to maintain their unbeaten record in the women's Euro 2013 tournament.

Strikes from Lotta Schelin and Josefine Öqvist, and a Raffaella Manieri own goal, ensured Sweden finished top of group A with a tally of seven points after the match in Halmstad, western Sweden.

Over 7,000 spectators were in attendance to watch a lacklustre first-half.

Yet when the teams returned after the break, three goals were netted in quick succession before Italy’s Melania Gabbiadini scored a consolation in the 78th minute.

“It was so damn nice to get such a great start and after that we just kept on going,” goalscorer Schelin told TV4 after the game. “We didn’t have very many chances but we took the ones we got.”

Sweden coach Pia Sundhage was pleased with the win but quick to note her disappointment with the team’s first-half performance.

”The three points are welcome but the first 45 minutes were so-so and we became pretty stagnant,” she told TV4. ”The match as a whole was up and down and I think we can do better.”

Sweden’s quarter-final match will take place on Sunday as the team now prepares to face the third-place finishers in Group B or C.

The Local/cd

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