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The Orange Lionesses have qualified for the European Championship final tournament by routing Estonia 7-0 at home on Friday night. Sarina Wiegman’s women top their group with a maximum of 24 points from eight matches, enough to secure them a spot in the next UEFA Women's Euro hosted in England.
The head coach was delighted that her team had booked a berth in next year final tournament at home in the Netherlands. Naturally, she regretted playing in an empty FC Groningen stadium, but added that her side had shown tremendous discipline and motivation against Estonia.
“Your mission has succeeded, you have qualified for UEFA Women's Euro in 2022, and I’ll be there too”, she told her team right after the match was over. Wiegman was hinting at her new job as England Women's head coach, which she will take up next year.
Netherlands playmaker Jackie Groenen was equally delighted. She scored a brace, a unique moment in her international career. “The match was tougher than you might think”, she told reporters. “It wasn’t easy to find space, but luckily we managed to keep up the pace and the pressure and that paid off.”
The other goal scorers were Daniëlle van de Donk, who netted twice in the first 15 minutes, captain Sherida Spitse and youngsters Katja Snoeijs and Aniek Nouwen. Surpringly, the all-time Netherlands top goal scorer, Vivianne Miedema, failed to get her name on the scoresheet, but of course she will be very pleased with the end result.
The score was more or less predictable, as the two previous encounters with Estonia also ended in a 7-0 victory for the Netherlands. It marks a successful end to an eventful week that started with the news that the Netherlands, together with neighbouring Germany and Belgium, have put together a joint bid to host the 2027 Fifa Women's World Cup.
First, of course, the Orange Lionesses will focus on the two tournaments they have now qualified for: the 2021 Olympic Games in Tokyo and the 2022 UEFA Women's Euro. And they will relish their fourth qualification for a European Championship final tournament in succession. On Tuesday, they’ll play the next qualifier against Kosovo in the capital Pristina.