Reds help Norway make strong Euro start

Friday 08 July 2022 08:57

Manchester United Women’s duo Vilde Boe Risa and Maria Thorisdottir helped Norway to kick off their Euro 2022 campaign with a comfortable 4-1 win over Northern Ireland on Thursday evening.

The latter, sporting the no.3 jersey, was named in the starting XI and played the full 90 minutes as The Grasshoppers put an opening-game three points on the board in Group A. 

Thorisdottir’s club and international team-mate Boe Risa was introduced as a 65th-minute substitute and helped her nation to see out the contest at Southampton’s St Mary’s Stadium, just over a week on from picking up her 50th cap for her nation. 

Thorisdottir celebrates with goalkeeper Guro Pettersen after Norway's third goal.
Norway had control on the fixture from the early stages after racing into a two-goal lead inside the opening 15 minutes, through Manchester City’s Julie Blakstad and Arsenal’s Frida Maanum. 

Caroline Graham Hansen’s converted penalty just after the half-hour mark strengthened that grip, before Julie Nelson made history for Northern Ireland after the break, scoring their first-ever goal at a major tournament, bringing it back to 3-1. 

But the Norwegian team responded soon after to reconfigure their three-goal advantage through a low free-kick from Guro Reiten of Chelsea. 

The result means that Norway have made their best-ever start to a Women’s European Championship, having never scored more than once in any of their nine previous group-stage games. 

It’s a sixth victory in a row across all competitions too and sees them occupy top spot in Group A ahead of England on goal difference, prior to the clash between the two sides on Monday, in which as many as five Reds could feature. 

Our Lionesses trio of Mary Earps, Alessia Russo and Ella Toone helped the hosts to get off to a winning start in front of a record-breaking crowd at Old Trafford on Wednesday and have since turned their focus to next week’s game in Brighton. 



United’s involvement at Euro 2022 continues this Friday evening as Ona Batlle and Spain get their tournament under way as Group B takes centre stage. 

Ona and co face Finland in Milton Keynes from 17:00 BST, with the other game in the group, Germany v Denmark, kicking off three hours later.