Women's EURO 2017 guide: Group C

Can third-time qualifiers Iceland or debutants Austria and Switzerland top France? That is the question as we profile the teams in UEFA Women's EURO 2017 Group C.

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  • The games (CET)

Tuesday 18 July
Austria v Switzerland (Deventer) 18:00
France v Iceland (Tilburg) 20:45

Saturday 22 July
Iceland v Switzerland (Doetinchem) 18:00
France v Austria (Utrecht) 20:45

Wednesday 26 July
Switzerland v France (Breda) 20:45
Iceland v Austria (Rotterdam) 20:45

France
2013: quarter-finals
EURO best: quarter-finals (2009, 2013)
How they qualified: Group 3 winners, W8 D0 L0 F27 A0 P24
One to watch: Wendie Renard (defender, Lyon)
Last five friendlies (most recent result first): DWWWD

• France reached these finals by stretching their record run of consecutive wins in qualifying group games to 41, but the team tipped as the most likely to end Germany's long run as champions need to snap out of their habit of falling short in the biggest matches. In 2009 and 2013 they suffered upset quarter-final penalty shoot-out losses to the Netherlands and Denmark, and they also fell at that stage in the 2015 FIFA Women's World Cup and 2016 Olympics. What is not in doubt, though, is their ability to call on the talent that has made Lyon the dominant European club force and also took Paris Saint-Germain to this season's UEFA Women's Champions League final.

Coach: Olivier Echouafni
"I don't think that saying things like, 'We're going to win, we're going there to win the EURO,' is the right way to approach it. We have to be humble, but at the same time be ambitious. We have to show ambition because we’re France, we're the third-ranked team in the world, we want to reach a new level and get over this psychological barrier which is weighing us down."

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Iceland
2013:
 quarter-finals
EURO best: quarter-finals (2013)
How they qualified: Group 1 winners, W7 D0 L1 F34 A2 P21
One to watch: Sara Björk Gunnarsdóttir (midfielder, Wolfsburg)
Last five friendlies (most recent result first): LDLWW

• Iceland were dealt a serious pre-tournament blow with the loss to injury of Margrét Lára Vidarsdóttir, whose goals have been a key reason for their rise in status over the last decade. Also out with the same cruciate ligament rupture is her sister Elísa and Dóra María Lárusdóttir. Still, they do boast ten-goal qualifying joint-top scorer Harpa Thorsteinsdóttir as well as talented midfielders Hólmfrídur Magnúsdóttir, Sara Björk Gunnarsdóttir, Dagný Brynjarsdóttir and Fanndís Fridriksdóttir.

Coach: Freyr Alexandersson
"Obviously we hope for the same kind of support as [the men] in 2016 and nothing suggests that won't happen. We've got good momentum behind us and we feel people intend to come and support the Icelandic national team. We're really looking forward to it."

©Sportsfile

Austria
2013: play-offs
EURO best: first qualification
How they qualified: Group 8 runners-up, W5 D2 L1 F18 A4 P17
One to watch: Nina Burger (forward, Sand)
Last five friendlies (most recent result first): WLLDL

• Austria have been building towards this, their final-tournament debut, for a while – with 14 of their 23-strong squad playing in the German league, including their all-time leading scorer Nina Burger and Bayern München duo Manuele Zinsberger and Viktoria Schnaderbeck (though the last of those is struggling with a knee injury). The size of their task is highlighted by the fact that, until an excellent 4-2 defeat of Denmark last Thursday, Austria had not beaten any of the 15 other finalists since overcoming Russia and Portugal in March 2014, at the Algarve Cup.

Coach: Dominik Thalhammer
"We're aware that we don't need to get good results, but they're still important for us, of course. We want to prove at the EURO that we are able to get some points, and even win the odd game."

©Sportsfile

Switzerland
2013: fourth in qualifying group
EURO best: first qualification
How they qualified: Group 6 winners, W8 D0 L0 F34 A3 P25
One to watch: Ramona Bachmann (forward, Chelsea)
Last five friendlies (most recent result first): LLWWW

• The match with Austria will also be Switzerland's UEFA Women's EURO finals debut, but having played in the 2015 World Cup and won this year's Cyprus Women's Cup, Martina Voss-Tecklenburg's side are definite dark horses. The presence in their squad of Ramona Bachmann, Lara Dickenmann, Ana-Maria Crnogorčević and Vanessa Bürki, all with experience at Europe's elite clubs, is proof of that.

Coach: Martina Voss-Tecklenburg
"We've managed some achievements in the last few years, and we've won some games no one ever thought we would. Now we're in a position where we have something to lose, the expectations are there. We want to achieve something, and maybe if we can't make it through to the quarter-finals, everyone will say, 'well, Switzerland didn’t win, but they tried'."