Monday 31 July 2017

Three Royals to go head-to-head as England & Netherlands progress!

Holland & England both progress to the semis, ensuring at least one Reading player will make the final!

It’s been a successful weekend for Reading players Jade Moore, Jo Potter and Mandy Van Den Berg for their respective nations at the European Championships.

The Netherland’s kicked the weekend’s quarter final action off in front of another sell-out crowd (11,106) in Doetinchem against a highly rated Sweden side. The hosts though always looked in control, and broke the deadlock in the 33rd minute when Lieke Martens’ clever free kick deceived Chelsea’s Hedvig Lindahl in goal. Van Den Berg, who did not start the match was brought on at half-time to help her defence see out the game. The Dutch then doubled their lead after Shanice van de Sanden’s pin-point pass allowed 21-year old Miedema to finish from close range.

Last night England made history by beating France for the first time in 43-years after an incredibly close game in Deventer. The star-studded French, who’s squad contained 10 champions league winners always carried a threat going forward, with striker Marie-Laure Delie squandering a good opening early on. It was Arsenal striker Jodie Taylor though who broke the dead lock on the hour mark, the 31-year old finding the net for an impressive fifth time in the tournament – no other player has scored more than twice. England then held on in what was a very tense half an hour, and are now the highest ranked team left in the tournament. The result also meant Mark Sampson became the first England manager since Sir Alf Ramsey in 1968 to reach consecutive semi-finals at major tournaments,, after also guiding his team to third place at the 2015 World Cup.

England and Holland, who are the only sides with a 100% winning record at the tournament, will lock horns on Thursday in what is set to be an unmissable clash in Enschede. The semi-final will potentially see three Royals go head-to-head, England’s Jade Moore & Jo Potter, against Holland captain Van Den Berg. This ensures that at least one Royal will be involved in the final, against either Austria or Denmark, neither of which have ever reached the European final before.