The Women's Euros are coming to a close. First to reach the finals was England who won their semi-final against the Netherlands 2-1 after extra time. Beforehand, the match was deemed to be an easy game for England, but the Netherlands fought to the end. Their equalizer came just three minutes after England's 1-0 and they were only four minutes from a penalty shoot out when England's Jill Scott headed the winning goal after watching the first 90 minutes from the bench. The second semi-final was played this evening between Germany and Norway. Germany came out on top 3-1 after first falling behind to the Norwegians. My second favourites, Sweden, were knocked out by Norway in the quarters. Normally, I support the Swedish girls more than even England. This time round, however, I wasn't quite sure. There were stories in the Swedish media that the girls in the Swedish team were texting their Norwegian counterparts trying to "stir it up"; the result was just a fired-up Norwegian team. The Swedish match commentators didn't help either when they took it for granted Sweden would beat Norway and declared the semi-final between Sweden and Germany to be the "moral final"!
Qualified nations to next year's World Cup finals, hosts South Africa, the Netherlands, Australia, Japan, North Korea and South Korea, have now been joined by Brazil and Ghana after the latest round of qualifying matches. Brazil's qualification was made all the greater by them winning 3-1 over their arch rivals, Argentina. Black Stars Ghana made it through to the finals at the weekend while Mexico got back on track in the final round of the CONCACAF group after a 3-0 win over Costa Rica. In Europe, France surprised everyone only drawing at home to Rumania. Now they have to rely on others if they are to take first place and automatic qualification and need to win against Serbia on Wednesday to be sure of a play-off place.
All the best.