The first leg of the playoffs for Euro 2016 in France has been played. The Nordic battle between Sweden and Denmark was played at Friends Arena, Stockholm. The players wore black armbands in order to honor the victims of the cowardly terror attacks in Paris last night. Both teams started the match in a good phase and we got to see some offensive football. After 15 minutes of play, Denmark had 63% ball possession against Sweden’s 37% but they never created any clear scoring chances. Instead, Sweden got a number of good shots. Marcus Berg missed three attempts the first 30 minutes. The ball possession evened out as the first half progressed. Zlatan Ibrahimovic almost gave Sweden the go ahead goal after a quick counter-attack, but just missed the net.
Forsberg scored the first goal
Slightly before the first half ended, Emil Forsberg scored 1-0 Sweden after some nice plays by Jimmy Durmaz and Mikael Lustig. The first half ended with a free kick by Ibrahimovic that Kasper Smeichel, son of former Danish goalkeeper Peter Smeichel, managed to save.
Sweden got a dream start of the second half. After a few minutes of play Emil Forsberg were one again a part of the action. This time he got tripped in the penalty area and the referees decision was a penalty kick. Ibrahimovic made no mistake from the penalty spot and the score was 2-0 Sweden after about 50 minutes of play. However, now Denmark began to play with higher pressure. Sweden lost their offensive play and had to focus on defense. In fact, the larger part of the second half was dominated by Denmark. In the 80th minutes Nicolai Jörgensen scored 1-2 after a corner kick. That might be a very important goal for Denmark. If they win by 1-0 in the second leg, November 17th at Parken, Copenhagen, they will advance to the 2016 European Championships in France. This battle is still open for grabs…
Results, playoffs Euro 2016
Norway 0-1 Hungary
Ukraine 2-0 Slovenia
Ireland 1-1 Bosnia-Hercegovina
Sweden 2-1 Denmark
A tough result for Norway who was to go down to Hungary and score two goals. Ukraine should be able to qualify to the Euro 2016 while the other two games are as open as they get…