It can be a little hard to know what to say about Norway, in their history they’ve been up (and up) but they’ve also been down (and down), and sometimes they’ve been neither up nor down.
Since their disappointing exit (and historically worst performance) at Euro 2017, the team has slowly turned a corner as coach, Martin Sjögren has rejuvenated the squad, leaning on the wealth of talented younger players in Toppserien.
The attack has had a notable facelift with Therese Sessy Åsland, Amalie Eikeland, Karina Sævik and Emilie Nautnes brought into the fold; the quartet with just 19 caps between them.
The defence too has undergone a shift, the troublesome question of left-back has been answered by converted attacker, Kristine Minde as Sandviken duo Cecilie Redisch Kvamme and Stine Hovland sure up the numbers.
A team whose strength lies higher up the pitch, Sjögren has yet to really push the team into taking full advantage of their natural offensive prowess and still looks for more of a methodical approach.
Drawn into a group with France, Nigeria and South Korea, the Football Girls are entering the tournament as somewhat of a wild card, well able to beat each of their opposition on a good day, yet equally as able to be left humbled and humiliated by each three nations.
Goalkeepers: Ingrid Hjelmseth (Stabæk), Cecilie Fiskerstrand (LSK), Oda Bogstad (Arna-Bjørnar).
Defenders: Ingrid Moe Wold (LSK), Cecilie Redisch Kvamme (Sandviken), Maria Thorisdottir (Chelsea), Maren Mjelde (Chelsea), Stine Hovland (Sandviken), Synne Skinnes Hansen (LSK), Kristine Minde (VfL Wolfsburg).
Midfielders: Frida Maanum (Linköping), Vilde Bøe Risa (Kopparbergs/Göteborg), Ingrid Syrstad Engen (LSK), Therese Sessy Åsland (LSK), Amalie Eikeland (Sandviken).
Attackers: Emilie Haavi (LSK), Guro Reiten (LSK), Karina Sævik (Kolbotn), Caroline Graham Hansen (VfL Wolfsburg), Isabell Herlovsen (Kolbotn), Lisa-Marie Utland (Rosengård), Emilie Nautnes (Arna-Bjørnar), Elise Thorsnes (LSK).
Likely to be battling for immediate qualification to the knockouts as the second placed team, Norway will be looking for a better showing than at the Euros two years ago, the disappointment something that could stoke their hunger to prove themselves. If Norway can reach the knockouts, it’s anyone’s guess; this Norway team is a long way from the one that won the World Cup in 1995. For this team, quarterfinals are a realistic target, if not a little hopeful.
Also see: Our main 2019 Women’s World Cup page.
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