Georgia Stanway screamer fires England into Euro 2022 semi-finals

England recovered from a goal down to claim a place in the Euro 2022 semi-finals when Georgia Stanway’s superb goal in extra time sealed a 2-1 victory over Spain at Amex Stadium.

The tournament hosts looked to be in trouble following Esther Gonzalez’s 54th-minute goal before Ella Toone leveled things up with a clever finish with six minutes remaining in regulation, cheered on by fellow substitute Alessia Russo.

Stanway then sparked a frenzy among the 28,994 spectators in attendance by firing a stunning goal past Sandra Panos six minutes after extra time as England secured a place in a fourth successive major tournament semi-final.

The Lionesses, European Championship runners-up in 1984 and 2009, will now face either Sweden or Belgium in the quarter-finals at Bramall Lane next Tuesday as they continue their quest for a major first piece of silver.

Ella Toone equalized for England

Ella Toone equalized for England (Adam Davy/PA)

After scoring 14 unanswered goals in three group stage wins, Sarina Wiegman’s side put on an impressive fight to come out victorious this time on their return to where last week, in the second of those games, they recorded the most victory in the history of the European Championship. by crushing Norway 8-0.

England had Wiegman back on the bench after his absence in last Friday’s win over Northern Ireland following a positive coronavirus test, and the same starting line-up once again that he had during group games.

Jorge Vilda’s Spain – ranked one place above England in seventh in the world, and without stars Alexia Putellas and Jennifer Hermoso in the tournament due to injury – had a four-change line-up since the 1-0 victory. over Denmark he saw secure second place in their group, with match winner on that occasion Marta Cardona among the innings.

England were under pressure from the start when Cardona shot wide at the far post in the seventh minute.

Ellen White headed the ball wide the other way, with the flag raised for offside, before Mariona Caldentey tried again for the Lionesses with a shot into the arms of Mary Earps and Patricia Guijarro headed it.

PA chart

PA chart

There had been much talk in the build-up to the match about Spain’s possession-based play and, unlike England’s group stage matches, it was their opponents who had more possession of the ball when Olga Carmona drilled wide and Aitana Bonmati sent a high effort. at the booth.

Suddenly the hosts seemed to have taken the lead in the 37th minute, when White fired as the ball came to him from a Lauren Hemp free kick, but again the forward saw the assistant referee raise the flag for offside, and a VAR check confirmed it. the effort would not last.

Despite that verdict, England seemed lively and a subsequent attack ended with Hemp wide.

The second half then began with a brief interruption as a pitch invader was tackled by security and led away, before White deflected a wide attempt while off-balance, with the offside flag again raised.

England will face either Belgium or Sweden in the semi-finals

England will face either Belgium or Sweden in the semi-finals (Gareth Fuller/PA)

Moments later, Spain took the lead when Cardona’s replacement at half-time, Athenea Del Castillo, dribbled past Rachel Daly and passed the ball to Gonzalez, who spun past Earps.

Wiegman responded by making a double substitution, sending in Russo and Chloe Kelly for White and Mead and, after referee Stephanie Frappart dismissed penalty appeals when Hemp went down in the box, Toone also entered the fray, replacing Fran Kirby.

Spain then came close to doubling their lead when Del Castillo lobbed the ball from the right and Earps was able to push it away.

Daly saw a shot collected by Panos shortly after and Hemp subsequently struck as England’s frustration continued.

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With the tension in the stadium building as regulation time drew to a close, the tie came when Wiegman saw his changes pay off, Russo winning an aerial challenge with Irene Paredes and Toone shooting Panos to send the fans from England to ecstasy.

Although the Spanish bench made their dissatisfaction known, the goal was scored and the match was later extended for an additional 30 minutes.

Stanway then made the Amex pop once more as he drove to the box and unleashed a wonderful shot from outside that flew over Panos diving into the net.

Amaiur Sarriegi fired a shot just wide of the Earps goal just before half-time in extra time, but Spain were unable to force a penalty shoot-out and, after chants of ‘football comes home’ echoed through the stadium, English fans sprang into action. Party mode to the fullest when the final whistle confirmed the progression of the Lionesses.