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England Women 0 – 0 Sweden Women



England Women 0 - 0 Sweden Women

Defending champions England kicked off their Euro 2025 qualifying marketing campaign with a 1-1 draw in opposition to Sweden in entrance of 63,248 followers at Wembley.

Alessia Russo nodded residence Lauren James’ supply to open the scoring inside 24 minutes, and the Lionesses managed to protect their lead on the break regardless of Sweden threatening.

An equaliser felt imminent after the interval, and at last got here when Fridolina Rolfo headed previous Mary Earps, whereas the Lionesses had been fortunate to not fall behind when Arsenal’s Stina Blackstenius squandered a great probability for Sweden.

“I believed their aim was actually pointless,” mentioned Sarina Wiegman after the sport. “They scored as a result of we gave away a throw-in and from that throw-in we weren’t capable of take out the cross they usually scored from that. That was disappointing.”

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England boss Sarina Wiegman displays on ‘disappointing’ draw with Sweden in Friday’s Euro 2025 qualifier.

The England boss additionally disagreed with criticism by some pundits that she had prematurely substituted her goalscorer, who was swapped for Chloe Kelly within the 79th minute.

She added: “Alessia performed effectively however tactically we wished to vary a few issues. We introduced Lauren Hemp inside. We simply wished one thing a bit of bit completely different.”

England's Alessia Russo celebrates with team-mates after opening the scoring against Sweden
England’s Alessia Russo celebrates with team-mates after opening the scoring in opposition to Sweden

Euro 2022 captain Leah Williamson watched on from the bench as Beth Mead and Lauren Hemp led a late rally, however couldn’t discover the of completion as the edges settled for a degree.

Williamson missed out on the Lionesses’ historic World Cup marketing campaign final summer time after rupturing her anterior cruciate ligament, and was additionally pressured to tug out of February’s friendlies with a hamstring subject after being named in her first England facet in 11 months.

Sweden's Fridolina Rolfo celebrates after equalising against England
Fridolina Rolfo celebrates her equaliser

The 27-year-old made her Gunners comeback in January however the journey has not been clean along with her most up-to-date setback coming throughout Sunday’s League Cup last, which she began with a taped-up knee earlier than being changed within the second half.

How England had been held by Sweden

Lucy Bronze cuts a frustrated figure at Wembley
Lucy Bronze cuts a pissed off determine at Wembley

Grace Clinton tried to volley England into an early lead, and there was fear for Sarina Wiegman when Russo went down after clattering into former Chelsea skipper Magdalena Eriksson, receiving prolonged remedy to her decrease leg earlier than she was deemed match to proceed.

Barcelona’s Rolfo got here shut with Sweden’s first good probability, sending Earps sprawling with a low effort that edged simply vast of the far submit minutes earlier than Russo broke the impasse.

It started with a superb effort by James to regulate the ball on the fringe of the realm and ship a pinpoint clipped cross to the awaiting Russo, who stooped to go residence within the twenty fourth minute.

Sweden seemed to answer on a number of events and largely seemed the extra threatening facet within the half’s closing phases, however England clung on to their lead as Wiegman made her first change, swapping Clinton for Ella Toone, earlier than Lucy Bronze had a weak header merely saved by Jennifer Falk.

Sweden boss Peter Gerhardsson made a pair of his personal adjustments, a transfer that proved prescient when England momentarily switched off and allowed substitute Rosa Kafaji to make an on the spot influence, delivering the cross for Rolfo to nod previous Earps.

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England’s Lauren Hemp believes the group will be capable to qualify from their robust Euro 2025 qualifying group after drawing with Sweden.

England had been fortunate to not concede a fast second when Arsenal’s Blackstenius, who netted the winner within the Gunners’ Conti Cup last, discovered herself one-on-one with Earps however directed her effort vast.

On got here extra Euro 2022 stars – that event’s Golden Boot winner Mead rather than James and Chloe Kelly, who memorably scored the winner in that event’s last, whereas Jess Carter changed Chelsea team-mate Niamh Charles.

Hemp had a chance to win it for England late on
Hemp had an opportunity to win it for England late on

The Lionesses had lower than 10 minutes to change the result, they usually got here shut when Hemp latched on to the rebound of her personal effort and fired a shot that Falk, who had slid out to make the preliminary save, would have had no probability of stopping.

It took a well-placed Eriksson to clear off the road, the stalemate standing after a superb save from Falk to disclaim Mead and protect the purpose.

Wiegman ‘dissatisfied’ to see England draw

Jess Carter and Lotte Wubben-Moy applaud the fans at Wembely after England's draw with Sweden
Jess Carter and Lotte Wubben-Moy applaud the followers at Wembely after England’s draw with Sweden

England boss Sarina Wiegman:

“I feel this group is actually robust. In fact I am dissatisfied, as a result of we all the time wish to win.

“I feel we scored an ideal aim, there was momentum within the sport, we performed effectively and we stored the ball a bit of longer.

“Second half I believed the aim was actually pointless. They scored as a result of we gave away a throw-in and from that throw-in we weren’t capable of take out the cross they usually scored from that. That was disappointing.

“As we see Sweden is a really robust opponent. I do assume we may have accomplished a few issues higher, but in addition confirmed Sweden gave us a tough time in the intervening time.

“We simply wish to study from these video games, we wish to do higher each sport as different international locations wish to do too. I feel it simply exhibits how shut and the way tight our competitors is.”

Russo: Each level counts on this group

England's Alessia Russo in action against Sweden
Alessia Russo gave England the lead at Wembley

England ahead Alessia Russo chatting with ITV:

“They’re [Sweden] a prime facet, our group is hard. We’re a great facet too so I feel it is disappointing however we have come up in opposition to a powerful facet. We’ll mirror and study and prepare to go once more on Tuesday.

“Our requirements are excessive, we all know we will demand increased of one another. We’ll personal that however throughout the board there have been decrease requirements that we will enhance on.

“They pressed us effectively, it isn’t a straightforward sport. We struggled to determine the issues however we did get a draw.

“All the time good to attain at Wembley, the house of English soccer. I really like enjoying for England and enjoying right here so it is good to get on the scoresheet.

“It is huge, we all know the group is outcome and each outcome and each level counts.”

What’s subsequent?

England are subsequent in motion on Tuesday as they tackle the Republic of Eire on the Aviva Stadium; kick-off 7.30pm.

Sweden may even host France in Group A3 on the identical night; kick-off 6pm.

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