France and Norway picked up crucial wins in this week's 2011 FIFA Women's World Cup qualifiers but there was a surprise setback for Denmark. With only the group winners progressing to the play-offs next summer with a chance to join hosts Germany in the finals, uefa.com reviews the latest games. Click on the individual group headings for full standings and results.
Group favourites France and Iceland met in Lyon on Saturday and Les Bleues won 2-0, following it up with a 12-0 defeat of Estonia in midweek. Iceland came away from Northern Ireland 1-0 to the good and are level on nine points with France having played a game more. Northern Ireland are six points back having begun with a 1-0 victory in Croatia on Saturday. France can move clear when they visit Serbia on 27 November, the only remaining 2009 fixture.
In the showdown between the two beaten UEFA WOMEN'S EURO 2009™ semi-finalists, Norway, under new coach Eli Landsem, beat the Netherlands 3-0. Norway then needed an own goal to overcome Slovakia 1-0 on Wednesday while the next night the Netherlands won 13-1 with six Sylvia Smit goals against an FYR Macedonia team fresh from losing 6-1 to Belarus. The Netherlands and Belarus can close the three-point gap to Norway when they meet on 21 November.
Denmark, who won 6-0 in Greece in September, had a mixed week; they overcame Georgia 15-0 with hat-tricks from debutants Lise Munk and Pernille Harder on Saturday but then were surprisingly held 0-0 in Bulgaria. That allowed Scotland to move to within one point, holding a game in hard, as they defeated a stubborn Georgia side 3-1 on Thursday, having won 1-0 in Greece at the weekend. In November, Georgia visit Bulgaria and Greece.
Poland defeated Romania 2-0 and won 4-0 in Bosnia-Herzegovina to remain on top with nine points from four games, including their Septemebr victory against Ukraine. Hungary beat Poland last month but on Wednesday were held 1-1 by Romania and are two points behind with a game in hand. Ukraine bounced back by overcoming Bosnia-Herzegovina 7-0 and visit Hungary on 14 November.
Spain, 13-0 winners in Malta in the only September game, picked up six more valuable piints by winning 2-0 and 1-0 in home and away fixtures against Austria. UEFA WOMEN'S EURO 2009™ runners-up England opened with an 8-0 defeat of Malta, who play Austria on 18 November. Turkey start their campaign next month at home to Spain and England.
Russia are sitting pretty after following their 2-1 September win in Switzerland with a 3-0 home defeat on Saturday of their other expected rivals, the Republic of Ireland. In midweek Switzerland and Ireland respectively won 2-1 in Israel and Kazakhstan and joined Russia on six points though the leaders have one and two games in hand respectively on their challengers. Israel got off the mark on Saturday by beating Kazakhstan 1-0 and welcome Russia on 17 November.
On Saturday, Italy won 8-0 in Armenia to move on to nine points from three games with 18 unanswered goals. Finland, on their travels, triumphed 3-0 in Slovenia and 1-0 in Portugal and trail Italy on goal difference. Slovenia got off the mark at the third attempt on Wednesday by winning 5-1 in Armenia. On 21 November, Finland play Armenia and Slovenia welcome Portugal. Four days later Armenia are in Italy.
Sweden are six points clear after winning 3-0 in Azerbaijan and 4-1 in Belgium, who they also beat in last month's opening match. The Czech Republic avenged last month's loss in Wales by securing a 2-1 win against Adrian Tucker's side, who then went down by the same score in Azerbaijan. In November, Belgium visit Azerbaijan and the Czech Republic.