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By Max McCracken
Starting off with the build up to this match, team news was released.
England fans saw their manager Sarina Wiegman name an unchanged side from their quarter final win. This was surprising to some as Ella Toone was left out after her late equaliser vs Spain.
Sweden made two changes to their side from their quarter final win vs Belgium as manager Jorge Vilda brought in Jachobsson for Rolfö and Jorge Glas for Nildén. The side was unchanged other than that.
The match began with early pressure from both sides as nerves looked to be present for both the England and Sweden players. Both teams looked as though they were attempting to play over the top of the opposition defenders as they attempted to get their strikers in on goal. The first 30 minutes were relatively quiet as both England and Sweden sat back with the intention of counter attacking each other. Sweden came closest to scoring as they hit the bar from a corner.
By this point the England players and fans became frustrated with the officials as they saw soft fouls go against them while the referee was reluctant to book the Swedish players for clear cynical fouls.
After this, it began to look as though nerves were settling for the England players as they began piling pressure on Sweden and by the 35th minute the deadlock had been broken. After the ball had been crossed in, one of England’s star players of the tournament so far, Beth Mead touched the ball down inside the box and fired home. The players and fans celebrated as they saw themselves go 1-0 up as Beth Mead scored her 6th goal from her past 5 matches. This pressure from England carried on until half time as the score stayed 1-0.
Half time saw no changes made by either side.
The second half began how the first ended with England putting pressure on the Sweden defence and by the 48th minute, England had scored again.
After a deep corner was whipped in, Lucy Bronze was there to head home from inside the box as the England players once again celebrated. After a VAR check for a possible offside was completed, the goal was given. England were now 2-0 up.
At this point England were completely dominating. 10 minutes passed, and in an attempt to change the game for them, Sweden made 3 changes as Seger, Kaneryd and Andersson were all subbed on. Sweden, however, still could hardly get their foot on the ball as they were mauled by England’s high press. The rare chances at goal Sweden came across were squandered as the score stayed 2-0.
By the 68th minute, England’s substitute of their own Alessio Ruso had added a 3rd goal as she converted a sumptuous back heel through the goalkeeper’s legs from around 6 yards out. England now find themselves 3-0 up.
Just 8 minutes later the Lionesses’ domination continued as in the 76th minute Frank Kirby lobbed Sweden goalkeeper Lindahl from outside the box making the score now 4-0.
The final 14 minutes of the match saw a tired Sweden side who already looked defeated along with an England side who were content to keep the score at 4-0. England ensured they kept their clean sheet while Sweden barely saw the ball leading to the match ending 4-0 to England.
Overall, a day to forget for Sweden and their goalkeeper Hedvig Lindahl while goals from Beth Mead, Lucy Bronze, Alessio Ruso and Frank Kirby lead England women to a 4-0 victory. This victory therefore means the lionesses progress to the UEFA women’s Euro final in which they will face the winner of the other semi final between Germany and France.