What was long feared has almost become a reality. England barely got in the way of Scotland and humiliated them 0-6. However, this massive result was not enough to get a ticket to the UEFA Nations League Final Four. The explosion of joy quickly turned into great disappointment.
With red-rimmed eyes, Beth Mead, just recovering from a knee injury, suppressed her grief at Hampden Park. The realization that she narrowly missed her chance to participate in the Olympics made her burst into tears. England thought it had qualified for the semi-finals of the UEFA Nations League after its big win over Scotland (0-6). Until the Dutch team made a dramatic turnaround in stoppage time.
After the final whistle, the international players waited for confirmation. Fear does not seem to have gripped them. Lucy Bronze thought she had given England the spoils with a goal shortly before the end. I celebrated with great enthusiasm what seemed like the final blow. The news from Tilburg came as a hammer blow. Damaris Egurrola’s goal against the Red Flames (4-0) immediately created a funeral atmosphere. The sensation turned into a nightmare.
The playing of the national anthem in a moderately packed Hampden Park before kick-off created the illusion of an imminent giant battle. The song “Scotland’s Rose”, which was sung vigorously by the fans, seemed to inflame the intolerance of the Scotland players. What happened on the field raised eyebrows. England thundered at the home team.
National team coach Sarina Wegmann rejected questions about the strange situation taking place in the European Nations League in the period leading up to the international match. Under no circumstances will Scotland help their eternal rival get the necessary result. England, earmarked to secure the Olympic ticket for Team Great Britain, hardly faced any opposition in the first half. The score was 0-4 at the end of the first half, which raised fears in the Netherlands that the “Glasgow Pact” was more than just a baseless conspiracy theory.
After the break, England were no longer on the safe side. The Scots tried with all their might to prevent further humiliation. Wegman’s team fought back hard to earn a 0-6 win. Strong goalkeeping from Lee Helen Alexander stood in the way of a bigger penalty. However, the victory seemed enough, until the Dutch team scored their goal.
Read also: ‘We can be proud of this campaign’: Red Flames hold their heads high after heavy loss in Netherlands, which could reach the Final Four after a crazy final
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