Scotland women “still believe” they can reach the knockout stage of Euro 2017 despite losing both their group matches so far, says head coach Anna Signeul.
But Signeul’s side can still qualify if they beat Spain by two goals and England see off Portugal on Thursday.
“We know we have quality in the team and everything is possible,” Signeul told BBC Scotland.
Ranked 17 places above Portugal, Scotland were expected to win in Rotterdam but despite clawing the match back to 1-1 in the second half, Ana Leite’s goal secured three points for the Portuguese.
England took an early lead that they protected until netting a late second, but Spain were awarded a penalty at 1-0 only for the referee to change her mind.
“Maybe our luck changed with that penalty that was called last night and pulled back. Good for us but bad for Spain,” Signeul said.
“We need a bit of luck – Scotland scoring an early goal like England did against Spain would be great.”
The task facing Scotland is a sizeable one as they have not beaten Spain in five attempts. They lost 4-3 on aggregate in a play-off to reach Euro 2013, with Spain’s Veronica Boquete scoring with the last kick of extra time.
“Their youth squads have been very successful, constantly in finals since 2010-11, so they are much better now,” Signeul added.
“But we go out there and be brave, think about how we set up.
“We will need to step up and deny them a goal or it will be too difficult to come back.”
Hayley Lauder returned to action for the Scots on Sunday but Rachel Corsie picked up a knock and striker Jane Ross will not recover in time.
- ^ 2-1 by Portugal (www.bbc.co.uk)
- ^ lost their opening fixture 6-0 to England. (www.bbc.co.uk)
- ^ Cuthbert backs Scotland against Spain (www.bbc.co.uk)
- ^ ‘Brave’ penalty decision helps England – watch & vote (www.bbc.co.uk)
- ^ lack of luck (www.bbc.co.uk)
- ^ England beat Spain 2-0 (www.bbc.co.uk)
- ^ lost 4-3 on aggregate (www.bbc.co.uk)