What to watch for in the Women’s World Cup soccer tournament Thursday:
ENGLAND VS. NORWAY
Where: Stade Océane in Le Havre, France
Time: noon PDT
TV: Channel 11, Universo
The buzz: Seven of the eight quarterfinalists are from Europe, with only the U.S. win over Spain in the round of 16 preventing a clean sweep. But one of those teams will go home after this quarterfinal. Norway has won 12 of its previous 18 meetings with England, outscoring it 38-12, but it hasn’t beaten a European team in Women’s World Cup play since 2003. England, ranked third in the world, has been in better form recently, cruising through group play here before posting its third straight shutout in a 3-0 win over Cameroon in the round of 16.
England has won five consecutive Women’s World Cup games dating to the third-place game in 2015. That’s the country’s longest-ever winning streak in the tournament. Ellen White has four of England’s eight goals in France; of Norway’s seven goals, two have come on penalty kicks, and two were gifted by opponents on own goals.
Norway lost to France by a goal in group play, then upset Australia in a penalty-kick shootout in its elimination game. The Norwegians, ranked 12th the world, have done well to get this far since their star player, Lyon striker Ada Hegerberg, the reigning world player of the year, isn’t here. She hasn’t played for Norway since 2017 because of a dispute with her national federation. The 1995 champion, Norway is playing in the quarterfinals for the first time since 2007, when it finished fourth.