After the success – sends pik to the Swedish people

After the success – sends pik to the Swedish people

Fourth semi-final in as many championships.

But the players believe that the progress probably surprised the Swedish people.

– Many have thought that it will be difficult for us, says Filippa Angeldahl.

First, Sweden knocked out the USA in a thrilling penalty shootout in the round of 16. Then the national team was pitted against a Japan that had impressed so far in the tournament.

After great drama, Sweden finally won 2–1.

Now Spain awaits on Tuesday in the semi-finals.

And all the hubbub surrounding the Swedish team’s success has reached the players on the other side of the globe.

– People get in touch, there are many who write, you notice from home that there has been a big uproar, it’s really fun that it is like that and it means a lot to get that support, says Johanna Rytting Kaneryd.

Nathalie Björn agrees:

– It’s fantastic to feel that support from home. And look how much it means to people who don’t even know us.

“Always had faith in ourselves”
But with last summer’s EC debacle fairly fresh in their minds, the players believe that progress during the WC may come as a bit of a surprise to the Swedish people.

– We have had some good performances now and surprised the Swedish people a little, says Johanna Rytting Kaneryd.

It is above all the matches against the USA and Japan that the Swedish star is referring to.

– They were favorites in advance and we have shown that we can get past those opponents. The performance against Japan I think was one of our best performances in the championship. We know what we can do. Since then we have had both good and less good performances, but I think we have really stepped up and that might be a surprise.

Filippa Angeldahl is of the same opinion.

– Yes, but we have surprised a bit, I think. Many have thought that it will be difficult for us, but we have always had faith in ourselves. We know how good we are and we know we are good in championships.

So far, Stina Blackstenius has scored one goal during the WC. The complete hit came in Sweden’s group stage meeting against Italy.

Right now, center back Amanda Ilestedt leads the blue-yellow shooting league.

– I’m just happy for Amanda, as long as we win the matches I’m super happy. She has really had a fantastic championship, leading us forward in this tournament. Super success, says Blackstenius.

After the victory against Japan, Peter Gerhardsson highlighted Stina Blackstenius’ performance.

– Sometimes it may not be visible, but someone like Stina Blackstenius does a great job up front in holding up the back line. If she had come down and faced, Japan’s backline could have stepped up, the national team captain said after the match.

– She has a role there to ensure that we get a good deep play. Not only when she should have the ball, but also open up areas for others. The players are adept at doing tactical things.

“Target production has not been where it perhaps should be”
The words mean a lot to Stina Blackstenius.

– I am fully aware that the goal production has not been where it maybe should be, but I have also really tried to focus on the fact that there are other things that I can do on the field that are important to help the team. Therefore, it means a lot to hear it from Peter.

How is it as a striker when the goals don’t come?

– Earlier, I think I would have felt a little frustration because you always want to be involved and contribute with points and goals. Especially in the last match when you are aware that you are in a situation where you should have scored. If we had come off that match and lost it would have been even harder, but now we manage to win the match.

The big change: “It’s most important”
She continues:

– Previously I had felt a frustration, but now I don’t feel the same way at all. The most important thing in the end is that we win the games and we have done that and it has taken us to a World Cup semi-final.

What has changed from before?

– I’ve really just tried to focus on the fact that everything doesn’t revolve around goals. If I can contribute with other things, I must try to see my performance as a whole. I have tried to train myself to think about that.

The striker describes how she feels safer.

– Not putting so much importance on what I hear from others, except for Peter in this case, what he thinks is most important. Then of course what the girls in the team think and when I get to talk to family back home.

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