Tuesday, June 18, 2019
Home Sport Women's World Cup: hosts France meets Norway in Nice

Women's World Cup: hosts France meets Norway in Nice

Highlights: France 2-1 Norway

France are "underdogs" for the Women's World Cup, according to Corinne Diacre, although the hosts have almost won a place in the knockout round by defeating Norway.

A penalty from Eugenie Le Sommer, after Marion Torrent was fouled by Ingrid Syrstad Engen, gave France a second successive win in Group A after Norway seemed to secure a point.

However, Diacre said that the presentation of her team in Nice showed that France still had a lot of work to do.

"We did what we had to do, we're still outsiders for the tournament," she said.

"We had some difficulties here and this game shows it, the World Cup is very complex.

"Piece by piece on the way – then you become a favorite."

France's first Group A with six points from two games – three ahead of second-placed Norway and third-placed Nigeria – and a group game against Nigeria on Monday (20:00 CET).

Hosted by 34,872 spectators in Nice, France had to dig deep to win against a determined Norwegian side.

In a high profile game, France was on its way to losing points for the first time in this tournament after Wendie Renard, who scored twice against South Korea, had scored a disastrous own goal.

Renard tried to steer Isabell Herlovsen's cross to the corner, but eight minutes into the game after Valerie Gauvin had taken the lead, he found his own goal.

"The perfect start" – Gauvin gives France the lead after the break

Amel Majri's cross found Gauvin standing in front of Chelsea's Maria Thorisdottir to enchant the guerrilla crowd.

Gauvin did not start the game against South Korea after being late for training.

Norway was clever and inventive and was not impressed by the occasion.

The World Cup winners of 1995 ended the game with a 1-1 penalty after Torrent was kicked by Engen.

Le Sommer started from the start to join Marie-Laure Delie, who was France's top women's World Cup top scorer ever with five points.

"We knew we would not win 4-0 and we wanted to show a lot of respect," added Diacre.

"What did she think?" – Rennard scores a catastrophic own goal

Norway boss Martin Sjogren said his team has earned a point.

"We lost the game, but I thought we were equal to the French," Sjogren added.

"I was not surprised by the French team – we knew that it would be sporty with fast players and speed.

"But we played well and I'm very proud of how my players played there, and in my book I think we deserve a 1-1 draw."

Aging France show their experience – the statistics

  • With an average age of 28 years and 189 days, France competed in a women's World Cup, the oldest starting eleven of all time.
  • Norway, after Japan in 2015, is only the second team in the history of the Women's World Cup to score an own goal in successive games.
  • Wendie Renard is the first player to score an own goal for France in a Women's World Cup.
  • Eugenie Le Sommer has scored 12 goals in her last 12 international appearances, including one goal in both of France's 2019 Women's World Cup games.
The two best teams in each of the six groups reach the knockout stages – along with the top four third place finishers

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