After over 80 years of waiting and wondering, the Finnish National Soccer team finally qualifies for its first major tournament. A 3-0 victory against Liechtenstein in Helsinki secured their qualification. Finland finished its qualifying campaign second behind Italy.
Finland is officially the final Nordic nation to qualify for a major FIFA tournament. With a young team with talent, it may be the dawn of the team’s first golden generation. In other words, the team’s future may be bright.
What Does This Mean For The Country?
Hockey is the country’s most popular sport. Finland is well-known for it’s National Hockey Team’s success. But now that it’s National Soccer Team has achieved something big, it brings the country pride and faith in Soccer. In other words, it gives the country another sport to be excited about.
How Did They Make It To Euro 2020?
Starting with a 2-0 loss to Italy, Finland then went on a four-game winning streak before losing two straight. Soon after, they turned it around, managing to win two straight to secure their spot in Euro 2020. They finished their qualifying campaign with six wins, no draws, and four losses.
In addition, striker Teemu Pukki was the top scorer in Finland’s group(10). He also finished in a tie for third in scoring in the entire Euro 2020 qualifying phase.
Finland took advantage of the shortcomings of Greece and Bosnia and Herzegovina. They managed to trade wins with those two opponents. In addition, sweeping Armenia and Liechtenstein increased Finland’s chances. In Finland’s case, those rare chances could not go to waste. A wasted chance increased their chance of missing out on the tournament.
A show of resiliency and a winning mentality played a major role in their qualifying campaign. Holding Italy to just two goals in both meetings is a result of a solid defensive effort. Furthermore, they conceded no goals in their six wins. In other words, they won their games in a resounding fashion.
The tournament’s official drawing is taking place on November 30th. Finland’s certainly going to have their work cut out for them. It’s too early to know if Finland will be darkhorse. However, all Finland needs is motivation. With motivation, they can find their two key elements of success from their qualifying campaign; resiliency and a winning mentality.