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FOOTBALL

Germany win their first women’s football gold

Germany handed departing coach Silvia Neid the perfect send off by claiming women's football Olympic gold for the first time thanks to a 2-1 win over Sweden in front of a huge crowd at Rio's Maracana.

Germany win their first women's football gold
German women soccer team coach Silvia Neid (R) celebrates after her team won the Women's soccer Gold Medal Match between Sweden. Photo: DPA

Dzsenifer Marozsan's sweet strike and Lisa Sembrant's comical own goal put Germany 2-0 up early in the second-half before Stina Blackstenius gave Sweden a lifeline.

Sweden, who scored just three goals in their five games before the final, started more positively than their previous form suggested, but Germany started to impose themselves as time went on and the best chance of the half fell to Anja Mittag after 25 minutes.

Leonie Maier's curling shot was only parried by the Swedish keeper and the ball fell to Mittag just yards from goal but she blasted the ball high and wide.

The sides were evenly match but things changed in the second half and it was the Germans who deservedly took the lead three minutes into the second period.

When they did it was a goal worthy of a cup final. Dzsenifer Maroszan gathered a cross ball on the edge of the box and had time to steady herself before curling a perfect strike into the top right hand corner of the net.

They extended their lead 14 minutes later thanks to an unfortunate own goal. A Sara Daebritz free kick from 20 yards smacked the post and Linda Sembrandt tried to clear but instead kneed the ball into her own goal from just a few yards out.

Sweden reacted almost immediately and just five minutes later Stina Blackstenius pulled them back into the game. Olivia Schough hit a beautiful low cross into the box from the right and Blackstenius slid in between two defenders and poked the ball home to cut the deficit.

Schough had a great chance to level the scores three minutes from time to take the final into extra-time but her shot was blocked just yards from goal.

FOOTBALL

British football teams allowed to skip Germany’s quarantine for Euro 2020

Germany's government announced on Tuesday it will allow England, Scotland and Wales to enter the country without quarantine to play at Euro 2020 despite a recent rise in cases linked to the Delta variant of Covid-19 in Britain.

British football teams allowed to skip Germany's quarantine for Euro 2020
One of the venues for Euro 2020 is in Munich. Photo: picture alliance/dpa | Sven Hoppe

The three teams could potentially reach the quarter-final held in Munich on July 2nd.

If that were the case, they would be exempt from the rule that travellers from the United Kingdom and Northern Ireland must currently observe a 14-day isolation period due to the virus strain of concern – Delta – first identified in India.

“The people accredited for the European football Championship are exempt from the quarantine obligation, even after arriving from an area impacted by a variant” Berlin said in a statement.

“This exemption concerns all the people who have been accredited by the organising committee for the preparation, participation, the holding and the follow-up of international sporting events,” it added.

The exemption does not include fans, who will be obliged to follow German government self-isolation rules.

Germany declared the UK a ‘virus variant area of concern’ on May 23rd due to rising cases linked to the Delta variant in parts of the country. 

READ ALSO: Germany makes UK ‘virus variant area of concern’: How does it affect you?

This reclassification came just seven days after the UK was put back on Germany’s list at the lowest risk level, and barely a month after it was taken off all risk lists completely.

The ban was put in place despite the UK’s relatively low Covid rates as a precautionary measure.

A general ban on entry is in place for people coming from countries on the ‘virus variant’ list – such as India and Brazil – the highest of Germany’s risk categories. 

There are some exceptions for entering from these countries – for example German residents and citizens. However, anyone who does enter from Germany is required to submit a Covid-19 test before boarding the flight and must quarantine for 14 days on arrival, regardless of whether they are fully vaccinated or not.

READ ALSO: Germany’s new relaxed quarantine and testing rules after travel

Euro 2020 starts on Friday as Italy host Turkey in Rome with the Bavarian city hosting three group games as well as the last-eight match.

Around 14,000 fans will be allowed into the Allianz Arena for the fixtures.

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