The Football Ferns have been beaten 2-0 by Norway in their international friendly in Ullevaal overnight.
The Ferns beat the Norwegians for the first time in 40 years back in 2019, winning 1-0, but couldn't repeat the dose today.
Ranked number 11 in the world, the Norwegians were looking to test themselves in the run up to next month's UEFA Women's Euros. The Gresshoppene were strengthened by the recent return of all-time women's UEFA Champions League top scorer Ada Hegerberg in only her third game back since her self-imposed exile from international football in 2017.
The Ferns made four changes from the last side that started against the Matildas in April. Vic Esson returned in goal, Liz Anton and Rebekah Stott (captain) came in for Anna Green and the injured Ali Riley in defence, and Annalie Longo returned after nearly a year away to replace Daisy Cleverley.
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Norway opened the scoring in the 33rd minute when Ada Hegerberg neatly rounded her marker and struck a low powerful shot into the bottom right hand corner of the net.
Four minutes later there was a chance for the Ferns to bring it level. A great Meikayla Moore cross flashed across the box but was just out of reach for Hannah Wilkinson and Katie Bowen, keeping it 1-0 at the break. Soon after halftime the Ferns had the ball in the net but Paige Satchell's goal was flagged offside.
Norway doubled their lead in the 90th minute when a loose ball from a Norway corner fell to defender Guro Bergsvand who volleyed home.
Post-game Ferns head coach Jitka Klimková searched for the positives.
"We had a perfect performance from Vic Esson again, who kept us in the game," said Klimkova. "We had Kate Taylor make her debut. It's a really bright future. If I look at how she performed against such a strong opposition and won many, many one v one battles…
"…Another one with Liz Anton who played the whole game. Never started before, ever and all of a sudden she finished the game. We had Annalie Longo who is back and performed really well and helped us to keep the ball better. So there are a lot of positives from this game."