They may have left it late, but France have finally announced their arrival at the Women’s World Cup, grabbing a win against Brazil to go top of Group F this Saturday.
While Les Bleues were lacking an incisive edge in their opening match against Jamaica, it was a different story against today’s opponents. Eugénie Le Sommer’s piercing runs were eventually rewarded, as the Lyon striker opened the scoring after 15 minutes, nodding in after Kadidiatou Diani had knocked the ball on from Sakina Karchaoui’s cross.
France would end up ruing their missed chances in the first half though, as Debinha equalised just before the hour mark after latching onto a blocked shot and evading her marker in Eve Perisset.
The Seleção looked to have the momentum from that moment onwards, with Les Bleues struggling to carve out chances – until they won a corner ten minutes from time. Selma Bacha’s set-piece was sent to the back post, and the captain Wendie Renard stepped up to head in the winner. Although Hervé Renard will likely be concerned by the team’s poor start to the second half – and their many instances of defensive dithering – but their spirited late fightback has renewed hope of going far in the tournament. Next up, Panama on Wednesday.
France player ratings
Pauline Peyraud-Magnin: 4 – Somewhat shaky with the ball at her feet, and her hesitation with regard to coming off her line sometimes amplified France’s defensive struggles. Made some good reflex stops, though.
Eve Perisset: 5
Maëlle Lakrar: 5
Wendie Renard: 6
Sakina Karchaoui: 5
Kenza Dali: 5
Grace Geyoro: 6
Sandie Toletti: 5
Selma Bacha: 6
Kadidiatou Diani: 6
Eugénie Le Sommer: 7 – A vastly different performance compared to last week – the Lyon forward constantly broke through the Brazilian defence and worked well in tandem with Diani.