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Denmark stun France in shootout
 Women's Football News 22 Jul 2013
Denmark stun France in shootout - 22 Jul 2013 - Women's Football NewsFrance 1 (Necib pen 71) Denmark 1 (Rasmussen 28)
Denmark won 4-2 on penalties

Denmark produced the shock result of the tournament to knock out favourites France on a penalty shootout after clinging on in an enthralling quarter final in Linkoping. 
The Danes had reached this stage on lots at the expense of Russia and after having been the better side in the first half, they were swamped by the French for the remainder of the match but the brilliance of goalkeeper Stina Petersen kept them in the game before breaking French hearts to book a semi final place against Norway.
Elise Bussaglia went just wide and Camille Abily just over for France early on but Denmark's game plan of pressing them when in possession was paying dividends. A superb passing move ended with Johanna Rasmussen shooting wide, although an offside flag had been raised.
Denmark's enterprising start brought reward just before the half hour mark when they took the lead. Katrine Pedersen's ball over the top was latched onto by Rasmussen and the winger kept her cool to drive her shot past Sarah Bouhaddi and into the far corner of the net.
France almost hit back a minute later when Gaetane Thiney swivelled in the area but her low shot brought out an excellent save by Petersen low to her right. Abily headed over and Petersen made good stops from Eugenie Le Sommer and Bussaglia as Denmark determinedly held onto their lead.
Pernille Harder was in outstanding form for Denmark who continued to look sharp going forward at this stage. The French players were getting more and more frustrated and this boiled over just before half time when the normally elegant Thiney committed a horrendous looking challenge on Mia Brogaard and was lucky to escape a red card.
France brought on Elodie Thomis at half time and, with the speedy winger as an extra outlet, began to take over possession and pushed Denmark back. However once again Petersen proved to be a formidable obstacle in goal with further good stops from Louisa Necib and Abily.
The increasing pressure did tell though and after Abily was barged in the back by Line Roddik in the area, a penalty was awarded. Necib stepped up and although Petersen got a hand to her effort, she could not keep it out and France were level.
From this point France went all out for the winner as Necib and Abily, who had been shackled for most of the game, began to find freedom and their renowned passing game clicked into gear. However Denmark stubbornly stood firm to take the game into extra time.
The extra period was largely one sided with France trying to find their way through a desperately tired Danish side which had been forced onto the back foot. Thiney fired just wide but Denmark clung on to keep the scoreline level at the break.
Abily almost made the breakthrough when she curled a free kick against the bar and France continued to press and press. However with central defenders Christina Orntoft and Roddik giving superb displays, and Petersen still in tremendous form, they somehow held on to take the game to penalties.
After Roddik scored for Denmark, Necib was first up for France but this time Petersen managed to keep out her effort. Julie Rydahl Bukh and Nadia Nadim both found the net, with Thiney and Le Sommer replying, before Bouhaddi kept out Therese Nielsen's effort. However Sabrina Delannoy struck the post with her kick, allowing a smiling Janni Arnth to find the top corner and send Denmark through.
Despite all their flowing football, France have gone out at the quarter final stage on penalties once again and have to reflect on yet another tournament winning chance slipping away. The semi final line up now includes three Scandinavian nations and a 'local derby' Final is a real prospect. 
France: Sarah Bouhaddi, Corine Franco, Laura Boulleau, Laura Georges (sub Sabrina Delannoy 57mins), Wendie Renard, Sandrine Soubeyrand (sub Elodie Thomis 45mins), Louisa Necib, Elise Bussaglia, Eugenie Le Sommer, Gaetane Thiney, Camille Abily.

Denmark: Stina Petersen, Therese Nielsen, Katrine Pedersen, Christina Orntoft, Janni Arnth, Line Roddik, Mariann Knudsen, Johanna Rasmussen (sub Julie Rydahl Bukh 61mins), Mia Brogaard (sub Line Jensen 74mins), Pernille Harder, Katrine Veje (sub Nadia Nadim 67mins).

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