Van der Gragt gives Netherlands win over Portugal

Stefanie van der Gragt’s first-half goal gave the Netherlands a 1-0 victory over Fifa Women’s World Cup debutants Portugal in Dunedin.

Van der Gragt’s powerful header was ruled out by referee Kateryna Monzul before the video assistant referee encouraged her to review her decision.

Portugal failed to trouble the Netherlands defence, registering their only shot on target in the 82nd minute.

The win moved the Netherlands second in Group E, below reigning world champions USA on goal difference.

Despite coming under pressure from a high-pressing Portugal early on, it was the Netherlands with the first opportunity as Lineth Beerensteyn’s sliding strike was deflected off the boot of Carole Costa and out for a corner.

That corner proved to be the game’s decisive moment as it was whipped in by Netherlands captain Sherida Spitse to the back post, where Van der Gragt towered over Tatiana Pinto to head the ball down across goal and into the bottom right-hand corner.


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