Denmark had to be patience but in the end they broke down a resilient Finnish side to secure their first points of the tournament while Finland were sent packing their bags by the Euro 2017 runners up.
Both sides came into the game at Stadium MK off the back of poor displays in their opening matchups losing 4-0 to Germany and 4-1 to Spain respectively. Denmark made just two changes for the match against Finland as Svava and Madsen made way for Nadium and Thrige as they opted to stick with their 3-4-3 formation.
Finland made just two changes as well with Hyyrynen and Engman being left out for Kuikka and Sainio as they stuck with their 4-4-2 formation but switched around the players in defence to hope to not concede as many as on Friday night.
Denmark finished as runners-up five years ago in Holland and were determined to keep their hopes of reaching the knockout stages again alive as they came out firing early doors in Milton Keynes. Just minutes in, the first chance of the game came as Nadim beat down Finnish defenders on the right-hand side and struck the ball beautifully but unfortunately for her it was straight into the keeper's arms.
Finland opened up the scoring against Spain in their opening match after just fifty seconds but there was little sign of the Finnish team even getting out of their own half and had their goalkeeper to thank moments later for the game still being level. Denmark were looking dangerous down the wing as this time Thrige fizzed a ball in across the box which Nadim turned goal wards but, luckily for Finland, Korpela was down low to turn it away from danger.
Finland lacked creativity throughout the contest but almost snuck ahead just before half time as the ball fell to defender Emma Koivisto whose low shot had Lene Christensen scrambling across her goal line as it just went the wrong side of the post.
As the second half started, Denmark took some time to get going but almost broke the deadlock when Harder picked up the ball halfway inside her own half as she drove it up the pitch beating three Finnish defenders, and found Holmgaard just outside the penalty area on the left. The finish didn’t match the excellent run but Korpela came out well narrowing the angle as she made another save which kept the Finns on level terms.
With just under twenty minutes to go, Denmark’s patience and the pressure told as they finally broke the Finnish backline down. As Sevecke sent a looping ball to the back post which was headed back onto the bar from close range by Holmgaard and fell to Harder who couldn’t miss from just two yards out as she gave the Dans their first goal of the tournament.
Finland hadn’t managed to create many chances but almost sneaked a goal and a vital point at the end as Danielsson, who had only been on the pitch for a matter of seconds, struck the ball beautifully and it was bound for the top corner but Christensen was equal to it turning it over the ball and securing the Dans all three points.
Denmark will be delighted to have secured their first points of the tournament but they must now beat Spain in their final group game to qualify for the Quarter-Finals. After Germany’s 2-0 win over Spain, Finland have now been eliminated from the competition as they will face a German side who have already won the group and make look to rest players on Saturday evening.