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Scotland 1-3 Sweden: Scots’ winning streak ends

Scotlands Kim Little and Swedens Elin Rubensson battle for the ball at Fir Park.  Picture: PA

Scotlands Kim Little and Swedens Elin Rubensson battle for the ball at Fir Park. Picture: PA

  • by ALAN CAMPBELL
 

SCOTLAND came unstuck at the seventh time of asking in their quest to qualify automatically for next year’s World Cup in Canada, but despite conceding three goals gave a vibrant account of themselves at Fir Park.

They still lead Group 4, but have played a game more and had their goal difference advantage eroded by a Sweden side ranked fifth in the world.

The first goal came slightly against the run of play. A corner on the right was taken by Sara Thunebro and Caroline Seger was left unmarked to curl a clever lob beyond Gemma Fay in the Scotland goal.

The Scots, though, were level in the 19th minute.

Lindahl gave away a free kick for handball just outside the box and when Kim Little’s goal attempt hit the arm of Sofia Jakobsson in the wall, German referee Bibiana Steinhouse had no hesitation in awarding a penalty.

Little made no mistake from the spot to level the scores. It was the first goal the Swedes had conceded in the group.

But the visitors regained the lead in 27 minutes with a goal which must have infuriated Scotland coach Anna Signeul.

Her defence clearly hadn’t learned the lesson from the first goal, as an identical corner again resulted in a Seger shot. This time it was blocked but Seger’s Paris Saint-Germain team-mate Kosovare 
Asllani touched the ball past Fay from close range.

Sweden got their third seven minutes into the second period, gifted to them by the Scotland captain. Gemma Fay looked to have dealt with the cross of her Swedish counterpart Lotta Schelin but dropped the ball at the feet of Asllani, who prodded home her second goal.

The goal took much of the sting out of the game, but Hayley Lauder hit the bar with a shot and then Little wriggled herself into space before releasing a shot which Lindahl did well to touch overbefore Lisa Evans came agonisingly close to pulling a goal back,

 

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