Norwegian sports writer Roar Stokke wrote on his blog on aftenbladet.no yesterday that Norway “should take a lesson” from the Icelandic national team in men’s football, which beat Kazakhstan 3-0 on Saturday while Norway lost 1-5 against Croatia.
“Icelanders are efficient and hard-working. They have done a good job with the national team since their U21-team knocked out the reigning champion Germany and qualified for its first major championship ever, in Denmark 2011,” Stokke commented.
“And now they’re heading towards their first major championship with the A-team too. The Europe Cup in France. And if they beat the Czech Republic in their next game, which will be at home, then Iceland will top the table. It would be a sensational success,” Stokke added.
Stokke also complimented Icelandic veteran player Eiður Guðjohnsen for his comeback—he scored the first goal in the game against Kazakhstan. “In the home game against the Czech Republic on June 12, Guðjohnsen will celebrate a big anniversary, his 80th national game. His opponent be warned.”
After Saturday’s loss against Croatia, Norway places third in qualifying group H with nine points, after Italy with 11 and Croatia with 13. Iceland places second in qualifying group A with 12 points after the Czech Republic with 13.