Road to the World Cup: Chelsea Women international round-up

Several Blues were involved as both Sweden and South Korea set new record home attendances for a women’s international.

A total of 25,882 fans were present in Stockholm’s Friends Arena to see Sweden take on Germany, with Hedvig Lindahl, Jonna Andersson and Magdalena Eriksson all in the home team’s starting line-up, but those fans left without a victory to celebrate following a narrow 2-1 defeat.

The Germans spent most of the match on the front foot but the two Chelsea defenders helped the Swedes weather the storm for much of the first half.
On the one occasion the Germans did create a clear-cut chance during the opening 45 minutes Lindahl proved up to the task, pushing Turid Knaak’s effort around the post.

The goalkeeper could do nothing as Germany came out firing on all cylinders after the break, though, as they scored twice in quick succession, first from a corner through Kathrin Hendrich and then an unstoppable rocket by Linda Dallmann.

Despite many of the Sweden’s home-based players looking a little rusty, with their domestic season not starting for another couple of weeks, they did pull a goal back from the penalty spot, Caroline Seger converting after former Blues striker Sofia Jakobsson was fouled.

South Korea had Ji So-Yun in their team as they faced Iceland for the first time ever, in front of 15,389 supporters, all eager to see their country’s first women’s international on home soil since November 2015.

Ji lined up behind a lone striker as a number 10, rather than the deep playmaker role she usually fills for Chelsea. However, it was the visitors who made the early impact with Berglind Bjorg Thorvaldsdottir scoring twice, the first a brilliant solo effort, to give them a two-goal lead at half-time.

South Korea fought back bravely in the second half, doing brilliantly to level the scores after goals by Lee Min-Min and Yeo Min-Ji, but couldn’t hold on as Iceland substitute Rakel Honnudottir snatched a winning goal in the second minute of injury time.

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