England is off to its second-successive Women’s World Cup semifinal after three different goal scorers led the Lionesses to a straight-forward 3-0 defeat of Norway on Thursday.
Jill Scott, Ellen White, and Lucy Bronze scored in the win, the last name with an emphatic finish off a set piece.
Nikita Parris saw a late penalty saved by Norway after Steph Houghton was fouled and injured in the box.
England will meet the winner of France and the United States in the semifinal, while the 1995 champion Gresshoppene bow out at the quarterfinal stage.
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England’s well-executed plan didn’t need help from Norway, but the Scandinavian country provided sloppy play in the final third anyway.
England’s first goal was aided by accidental misdirection, as Lucy Bronze drove around the left of the Norway defense to cut a ball back toward the spot. EWhite missed her kick completely which must’ve stalled the defense for Scott, standing 6-8 feet away, to push a shot off the far post and into the goal.
Nikita Parris worked the same side of the defense before cutting toward goal, where she smashed a left-footed shot wide of the goal.
While Norway was a shade off in its attack, England looked ready for anything. White smashed a shot off the far post in the 29th minute.
The lead went to two when White drifted to the center of the six to side-foot an easy finish of Parris’ nutmeg pass from the right.
Norway came close to pulling back a goal just two minutes into the second half, but an awkward bounce stopped Caroline Hansen from a first-touch attempt.
England put it to bed through Bronze, who took a cut back free kick and smoked an arrow under the cross bar.
It could’ve been 4-0, but Parris saw her penalty saved by Ingrid Hjelmseth.