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Photo: Uroš Hočevar

Norway secures the 11th place after a turnover

In the third match of the day in Koprivnica, Norway faced Portugal for the 11th place.

After Norway’s Lars-Henrik Hygen opened the match, Portugal retook the lead thanks to Fabio Teixiera and Martim Costa. Portugal’s furious three-goal series was stopped by Hygen who scored for 3:5. Nuno Santos’ team dominated throughout the first half thanks to fast breaks, precise shots and great reactions from their goalkeeper Alexandre Oliviera, who had seven saves. Despite Norway’s effort to catch up and tie before the end of the first 30 minutes, Portugal had a two-goal at the half time (11:13).

Because of the strong start in the second half, thanks to Ola Hoftun Lillelien’s two goals and Tobias Grondahl’s precise shot from the seven-meter line, Norway equalised (15:15). In the 38th minute, Hoftun Lillelien scored for Norway’s lead but Salvador Salvador quickly brought a new tie. Norway’s Alexandre Christoffersen Blonz’s two-goal series afforded his team time to build an action which will increase their lead and Grondahl made sure to make the most of it (19:16). Anstein Engravslia was forced to call a time out in the 47th minutes after Portugal’s three-goal series for -1 (21:20). Thanks to Andre Bergsholm Kristensen’s 13 saves and Grondahl sealing the deal, Norway beat Portugal second time at M18 EHF EURO 2018 (28:24).

Norway’s best player was Ola Hoftun Lillelien and Portugal’s was Joel Ribeiro.

Top scorer for Norwegian side was Tobias Grondahl scoring six and Joel Ribeiro and Martim Costa each scored six for Portugal.

Norway coach, Anstein Engravslia: In the first half it seemed like we didn’t want to win the game, all the players were a little off target mentally. We managed to keep the diference at half time and in the second half the team was amazing and our goalkeeper was amazing in the last 10 minutes. Congrats to the guys, they played 10 games in 14 days. They are very tired now. Mentally tough, but a strong win today.

Norway player, Ola Hoftun Lillelien: We were a better team than Portugal, we defeated them 3 times in 14 days. It was a tied match every time. We decided on our team meeting that we will do our best and that’s what we did.

Portugal player, Joel Ribeiro: We tried our best, but we didn’t have any luck, we missed a lot of goals. The first half was very strong, but we collapsed in the second one.

Portugal coach,  Joao Varejao: Today Portugal lost like Norway did yesterday. We were good in the first half, but in the second half we didn’t exist. We missed some easy things, 7m shots, the ones against the keeper and when you miss that you lose the game.


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