The news that Norway’s ace striker Ada Hegerberg had been injured and would not be able to play in Tuesday’s Women’s World Cup match against Switzerland caused Norway’s head coach Hege Riise to have a nervous stomach.
The fact that Caroline Graham Hansen was upset at being left out of the lineup contributed to tensions among the team, which in turn made Riise’s troubles even worse.
After Norway’s loss to New Zealand in the first game of the World Cup by a score of 1-0, head coach Riise made the decision to bench winger Graham Hansen for the game in Hamilton. Hansen had won the Champions League only the previous month while playing for Barcelona.
In the meanwhile, Hegerberg, a past winner of the Ballon d’Or, had lined out on the field for the national anthems before limping back into the locker room with an injury. Sophie Roman Haug entered the game as a last-minute substitute.
According to the Norwegian Football Association, Hegerberg had soreness in her groin during the last sprint of the warm-up, and Riise said that she didn’t realize a substitution would be necessary until the very last minute.
“We were quick to have (the line-up) changed so Sophie could come in and not use a substitute,” said Riise, who did not offer any more information on the severity of Hegerberg’s injury. “We were quick to have (the line-up) changed so Sophie could come in and not use a substitute.”
Riise may have a more immediate worry than Graham Hansen’s anger at not starting since Norway must now win their last Group A game against the Philippines in order to have any chance of advancing to the round of 16.
Graham Hansen reportedly expressed her displeasure to the Norwegian media after being omitted from the starting XI, claiming that she had not been treated with respect.
Riise responded to a question regarding the player’s response by saying, “These are things we will handle internally.”
“There is a great deal of disappointment in the fact that we did not win. Caroline has the right to be upset and to voice her view, but ever since I’ve been in this role, I’ve insisted that the team is the single most essential factor.
“Every player is eager to get the contests started. I came to the conclusion in order to look out for the welfare of my players, and I stand by my choice today,” the coach, who is 54 years old, said.
Due to the absence of Hegerberg, who is the all-time leading scorer in the UEFA Champions League, and the fact that Graham Hansen did not enter the game until just before the hour mark, Norway’s attack in the final third was uninspired.
They haven’t scored any goals or won any games thus far in the competition, and they only have one point in Group A.
Switzerland is now in first place with four points, one point ahead of New Zealand and debutants the Philippines. Earlier in the day in Wellington, the Philippines defeated the co-hosts Switzerland by a score of 1-0.
To have any hope of moving on to the next round, Norway has to win their last group game, which will take place against the Philippines in Auckland on Sunday.
In order to advance to the round of 16, Switzerland must only avoid a loss whilst competing against New Zealand at the same time.
On a night that was terrible due to the rain, cold, and wind, the 10,769 spectators that came up were dissatisfied by the fact that Hegerberg was injured shortly before the game started. Hegerberg’s career has been derailed by injuries in recent years.
Roman Haug, the player who came in as her substitute for Roma, came close to scoring twice but was denied by the Swiss goalkeeper Gaelle Thalmann. The first time, he attempted to score with a header in the middle of the first half, and the second time, he attempted to score with a half-volley after the break.
After Graham Hansen was brought in for Norway, the team displayed a greater degree of vigor, and Thalmann was forced to make another save because Hansen had cut in from the right side.
Ana Maria Crnogorcevic, a club teammate of hers, had Switzerland’s finest opportunity, but she missed the target following a rapid exchange of passes in the first half.
However, a draw was the best possible outcome for Switzerland, and Norway is in danger of being eliminated in the group stage, exactly as they were in the European Championship in 2017.