The Netherlands won Group A with a 100% record after a tense 2-1 victory which eliminated Belgium, while Denmark also went through following an early goal against Norway.
The low countries derby in Tilburg was held up for some time after a clash of heads between Holland’s Anouk Dekker and Belgium’s Maud Coutereels.
Not long after the resumption of play, it was Coutereels who felled Jackie Groenen in the box and Sherida Spitse stepped up to convert the penalty.
Belgium equalised just before the hour mark, when Tessa Wullaert volleyed the ball high back into the box and it dropped just under Sari van Veenendaal’s crossbar.
But the match was decided on 74 minutes as Lieke Martens’ shot took a wicked deflection off Heleen Jaques, which sent it looping up over the helpless Justien Odeurs and into the net.
However, there were still some tricky moments for the hosts, not least when Kika van Es had to clear off the line from Jaques’ header.
Norway’s disappointing tournament ended without scoring a single goal, as Katrine Veje’s 5th-minute effort proved enough to give Denmark the three points.
Pernille Harder took advantage of a slip by Nora Holstad Berge to set up Veje to fire past Ingrid Hjelmseth from the edge of the box.
This early setback left the Norwegians needing an unlikely four goals to reach the quarter-finals and it certainly was not looking like their night after Ada Hegerberg won a penalty, only for Caroline Graham Hansen’s spot-kick to be saved by Stina Lykke Petersen.
Further frustration was to follow, as both Graham Hansen and Ingrid Wold were denied by the woodwork, the former then having a goal disallowed for offside and Lisa-Marie Utland was thwarted by a fine Peterson stop.
Group B concludes tonight and the winners (one of Germany, Sweden or Russia) will face the Danes in Rotterdam on Saturday, while the Dutch take on the runners-up in Doetinchem.
Photos – onsoranje.nl