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Cool Iceland down Dutch
 Women's Football News 17 Jul 2013
 
Iceland 1 (Brynjarsdottir 30) Holland 0
Iceland are through to the quarter finals after they recorded their first ever victory in the Finals of the UEFA Women's Championships. 
 
A header on the half hour by Dagny Brynjarsdottir made history for her country but ended a nightmare tournament for the Dutch, who were beaten semi finalists four years ago but failed to register a single goal this time around.
 
Yesterday's draw between Denmark and Finland meant that the two teams went into the game knowing that a victory would guarantee themselves a place in the last eight and it was Iceland who inflicted the early pressure. Katrin Jonsdottir almost put them in front, the captain's header being cleared off the line by Dyanne Bito, and they went close again when Rakel Honnudottir's slide rule pass was latched on to by Holmfridur Magnusdottir whose shot struck the near post and went across the face of goal.
 
Holland hit back with a powerful long range strike by Lieke Martens which was touched onto the bar by Gudbjorg Gunnarsdottir but the momentum at this point was with Iceland and they made the breakthrough with 30 minutes on the clock.
 
Sara Bjork Gunnarsdottir broke down the left and whipped in a pinpoint cross for Brynjarsdottir to find space between two defenders before giving Loes Geurts no chance with a downward header which found the corner of the net.
 
It could have been two minutes later but Margret Lara Vidarsdottir sent a free header over the bar from six yards out.
 
After the break, Iceland sat back on their one-goal lead whilst Holland toiled in an effort to get themselves back in the game but they could not get going and struggled to find a way through.
 
Holland were restricted to long range efforts, mainly from Sherida Spitse free kicks, while much vaunted strikers Manon Melis and Kirsten Van de Ven were kept quiet by the Iceland defence.
 
Martens remained the likeliest hope for the Dutch and she did go close with a low strike which Gunnarsdottir did well to get down to her right and save.
 
As the game went into the latter stages, Holland pushed captain Daphne Koster forward as an extra striker but even she could make no impression despite her side winning a series of corners.
 
Iceland had spent most of the second half on the defensive but two counter attacks almost led to them increasing their lead, Honnudottir had a shot charged down following an excellent reverse pass by Vidarsdottir and Magnusdottir also had an effort blocked. Then, Harpa Thorsteinsdottir raced onto an excellent through ball and fired just wide.
 
Holland were committed to attack though and came closest when Spitse's drilled shot from the edge of the area looked destined for the corner of the net but again Gunnarsdottir was equal to the task with another fine save. A tiring Iceland side held out for victory and they can now look forward to the biggest match in their history, whoever their opponents may be. 
 
Iceland: Gudbjorg Gunnarsdottir, Sif Atladottir, Fanndis Fridriksdottir (sub Olina Vidarsdottir 86mins), Dagny Brynjarsdottir, Hallbera Gisladottir, Holmfridur Magnusdottir, Sara Bjork Gunnarsdottir, Katrin Jonsdottir, Margret Lara Vidarsdottir (sub Harpa Thorsteinsdottir 62mins), Dora Maria Larusdottir, Rakel Honnudottir.

Holland: Loes Geurts, Dyanne Bito, Daphne Koster, Renee Slegers (sub Anouk Dekker 45mins), Claudia van den Heiligenberg, Anouk Hoogendijk, Kirsten Van de Ven (sub Sylvia Smit 77mins), Sherida Spitse, Manon Melis, Danielle Van de Donk, Lieke Martens.


 
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