Spain book Olympic place with Nations Cup

France, who have already qualified, beat Germany 2-1 in the other semi-final

AFP February 24, 2024
Aitana Bonmati assisted the first goal and then scored the second in Spain's 3-0 win over Netherlands. PHOTO: CRISTINA QUICLER


World Cup winners Spain guaranteed their place at this year's Olympics in Paris with a crushing 3-0 win over the Netherlands in Seville in the Nations Cup semi-final on Friday.
France, who have already qualified as hosts for the Olympics, beat Germany 2-1 in the other semi-final meaning the final place in Paris will be taken by either the Germans or the Dutch who will meet in the third-place play-off.
Jenni Hermoso put the Spanish on track, latching on to a neat pass from Aitana Bonmati to net the opener after 43 minutes.
Hermoso had also scored on her return to action last October in her first game back for her country after disgraced former Spanish football federation president Luis Rubiales forcibly kissed her during the World Cup medal ceremony.
Two minutes later, Bonmati turned from provider to finisher as she got on the end of Mariona Caldentey's low cross from the left to make it 2-0.
Ona Batlle bundled in a third after 77 minutes to seal the win and extend Spain's impressive record to just two defeats in their last 20 games.
In Lyon, an unmarked Kadidiatou Diani put France ahead against the Germans with a low half-volley four minutes before the break.
Moments later, in added time at the end of the first half, Lena Oberdorf mistimed a sliding tackle on Marie-Antoinette Katoto in the area to hand France a penalty which Sakina Karchaoui slotted past Merle Frohms in the German goal.
Giulia Gwinn pulled one back from the penalty spot eight minutes from the end but France held on for the win.
France will now meet Spain in the Nations League final on Wednesday while Germany and Netherlands will battle it out in the third-place play-off with an Olympic place on the line.


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