Norway 0-1 Spain: Euro 2024 Spot

Scotland has a reason to rejoice as they secured their place in next summer’s UEFA European Championship. This came after Spain emerged victorious against Norway in the Euro 2024 qualifiers on Sunday evening. Norway winning was the only scenario that could have prevented Scotland from qualifying without even playing. However, Gavi’s second-half goal not only ensured Spain’s victory but also allowed Scotland to move forward from Group A.

Gavi’s solitary goal made sure that Spain bested Norway, meaning the Scandinavian team won’t be finishing in the top two of Group A.

Throughout the match, Spain was the dominant force. Their efforts seemed to pay off when Alvaro Morata netted a goal in the first half, only to have it disallowed due to a questionable offside call. Shortly after the half-time break, Spain finally found their mark. Gavi managed to score amidst a chaotic scramble in front of the goal. Even though this goal too was subjected to a long review, it was ultimately counted.

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Norway’s performance was notably lackluster, especially given the match’s significance for them. Their hopes now lie in possibly qualifying via the Euro 2024 playoffs.

As things stand, Spain now tops the group, edging out Scotland based on goal difference. Both teams have confirmed their spots in Germany for the championship. Norway, meanwhile, is trailing in the third spot, five points behind with only one game remaining.

Talking Point – A Missed Opportunity

It’s baffling to consider that Norway, which had qualified for three major tournaments out of the four since 1994, might yet again miss out on a significant championship. This could mean Erling Haaland might not see a finals appearance until he’s 26 – a stark contrast to Kylian Mbappe, who was a World Cup winner at 18. Staale Solbakken made a quick exit post-match, raising questions about his tenure, especially if Norway doesn’t make it to the tournament in Germany. The team’s inability to capitalize on Martin Odegaard’s potential is glaring. The Arsenal captain was largely inconspicuous throughout the match, save for a missed golden opportunity.

The only Norwegian player who seemed to pose any threat was 18-year-old substitute Antonio Nusa, whose daring play starkly contrasted with the hesitancy of his senior teammates.

Player of the Match – Rodri (Spain)

While Spain controlled the match and their midfielders and forwards were superior to their Norwegian counterparts, it’s not far-fetched to think that had Rodri been on the opposite team, the game’s dynamics could have been different. He has a knack for dictating the game’s pace like no other and consistently offers both defenders and forwards optimal ball delivery. His stats, with over 100 passes at a 96% success rate, speak for themselves, showcasing his ability to make precise and impactful decisions on the field.

Player Ratings

Norway: Nyland 6; Ryerson 6, Ostigard 6, Strandberg 6, Meling 6; Bobb 5, Berge 6, Berg 5, Aursnes 6; Odegaard 5; Haaland 6. Subs: Nusa 7, Thorsvedt 6, Sorloth 6, Ajer 6.

Spain: Unai Simon 6; Carvajal 7, Le Normand 6, Laporte 7, Fran Garcia 7; Gavi 7, Rodri 8*, Fabian Ruiz 7; Ferran Torres 7, Morata 7, Ansu Fati 6.