Sweden end German hoodoo to set up semi-final clash with Netherlands
Paris: Stina Blackstenius scored the winner as Sweden came from behind to stun old rivals Germany on Saturday and set up a women's World Cup semi-final against the Netherlands, who reached the last four for the first time.
Sweden had not beaten Germany at a major women's tournament since the 1995 World Cup, failing to win any of their subsequent meetings at World Cups, European Championships and Olympics in almost quarter of a century.
That run included defeats in the 2003 World Cup final and the gold medal match at the 2016 Rio Olympics, but they gained revenge in Rennes, coming from behind to win their quarter-final 2-1.
Lina Magull had given Germany a 16th-minute lead with a fine finish from a Sara Daebritz assist, but the excellent Sofia Jakobsson equalised soon after on a hot evening in Brittany.
The winner arrived three minutes after half-time, with Blackstenius prodding home the rebound after Almuth Schult had saved a Fridolina Rolfo header. Despite bringing on star player Dszenifer Marozsan, who had missed the previous three games with a broken toe, Germany remained blunt as the clock ticked down.
Blackstenius had scored Sweden's winner against Canada in the last round and also netted against the Germans in that Olympic final defeat in 2016.
"We have talked about the possibilities here for us to go far and win every game," said a bullish Sweden coach Peter Gerhardsson.