The Danish women’s football team have today notched up the biggest win in their history: a 2-1 defeat of Germany in the quarter-finals of Euro 2017 to deny the favourites their seventh tournament win in a row.
The last time Germany failed to win the UEFA European Women’s Championship, Bill Clinton was still enjoying the first year of his presidency.
Since then it has been expanded from a four-team format to comprise 16 teams, but nobody could stop the Germans. Or at least until today!
Early goal for Germany
In a game that kicked off at midday after the original fixture time was postponed from last night due to a waterlogged pitch in Rotterdam, nobody gave the Danes a serious chance of stopping the German juggernaut.
And the pundits were clapping themselves on the back after just three minutes as Germany took what proved to be a deserved lead on the balance of the opening half-hour.
Nadia leads the fightback
However, as the game approached the break, the Danes started to hold their own, and within four minutes of the restart they were level as the German defence got caught out by an unexpected advantage following a foul on the Danish right wing.
Nadia Nadim found herself in acres of space to nod home at the far post, and not long after she should have been celebrating an assist, as Danish left winger Katrine Veje contrived to hit the crossbar from three metres out with the goal gaping.
Winner seven minutes from time
Danish keeper Stina Lykke Petersen, who was uncharacteristically at fault for Germany’s opener, was in imperious form, denying the Germans twice as they looked certain to score.
But then with just seven minutes remaining, Theresa Nielsen found herself unmarked in the German area to head downwards and see the ball sail into the left corner.
Germany rallied but never seriously threatened to beat a goalkeeper who on current form looks unbeatable.
Denmark will next put that to the test on Thursday August 3 against the winner of tonight’s quarter between Austria and Spain.