Hosts France enjoy blistering start in Women’s World Cup
Women’s World Cup 2019 – Group A, Parc des Princes, Paris – France 4 (E. Le Sommer 9', W. Renard 35', 45', A. Henry 85') South Korea 0.
France got off to the perfect start at the Women’s World Cup as the hosts claimed an emphatic 4-0 win over South Korea in the tournament’s opening game.
Corinne Diacre’s side are considered among the frontrunners for the tournament and backed up that status with a complete performance in front of a sell-out crowd at the Parc des Princes in Paris.
Eugenie Le Sommer opened the scoring after nine minutes, smashing a finish in off the underside of the crossbar following a cut back by Amandine Henry. Griedge Mbock Bathy thought she had added a stunning second, firing home a volley after 27 minutes, only for VAR to rule it out for offside.
The second goal did arrive on 35 minutes, though, when Wendie Renard headed home from a corner kick. And the routine was repeated just before half time, with Renard guiding another header into the back of the net.
France coasted through much of the second half, but scored a fourth five minutes from time when Amandine Henry curled home a finish from 20 yards out, putting the finishing touches on an impressive win for the host nation.
TALKING POINT - France have lit the fuse on the 2019 Women’s World Cup
There was real anticipation in France ahead of this Women’s World Cup. Much of that is down to the strength of the host nation’s team, one of the favourites to win the tournament. A strong France side could make this Women’s World Cup the most memorable on record and so this opening game win has lit the fuse on what will be a remarkable month of football.
WOMAN OF THE MATCH - Amandine Henry (France)
This was a performance about control, at least for France, and nobody reflected that better than Henry. She dictated the pace of the match from start to finish from her position in the centre of the pitch, setting up Le Sommer for the opener and capping her performance with a stunning strike from distance, the best goal of the night. What a display.
France: Boudhaddi 5, Majri 8, Renard 9, Mbock Bathy 7, Torrent 6, Bussaglia 6, Henry 9, Le Sommer 8, Thiney 7, Cascarino 6, Diani 6. Subs: Perisset 5, Gauvin 6, Geyoro 6.
9’ GOAL! France 1-0 South Korea: It's an opening goal for the host nation and it's a beauty! The pass from wide down the right by Henry was perfect and Le Sommer smashes a finish into the back of the net off the underside of the crossbar! France are up and running.
27’ GOAL! France 2-0 South Korea: What a stunning goal! France have a two-goal lead! France played a short corner, with the cross clipped to the back post. Renard then headed the ball across the six-yard box and Mbock Bathy finished it with an astonishing volley! This is going to VAR, though.
30’ GOAL RULED OUT! Well, after a very lengthy delay the officials have decided to rule out Mbock Bathy's stunning volley! One camera angle showed that her foot was JUST offside. That's harsh.
34’ Fingertip save! That was close to being a second goal for France! Marji played the pass in behind for Le Sommer, whose touch set her up nicely. Kim makes the save to deny her a second, though!
35’ GOAL! France 2-0 South Korea: France have a second goal and this one won't go to VAR! Renard gets in between two South Korean markers and powers a header into the back of the net! The giant French central defender didn't even need to jump! She just strolled in there!
47’ GOAL! France 3-0 South Korea: It's three! And it's a second for Renard! The defending from South Korea was poor once again, but Renard still had a lot to do to guide her header from a corner kick into the back of the net from about eight to 10 yards out. France are in total control!
PARIS, FRANCE - JUNE 07: Wendie Renard of France celebrates after scoring her team's third goal with team mates during the 2019 FIFA Women's World Cup France group A match between France and Korea Republic at Parc des Princes on June 7, 2019 in Paris, FraGetty Images
77’ Big chance for South Korea! That would have given them a late lifeline. A mistake from Renard allowed Lee through on goal, but from a one-on-one position she sends her shot wide of the far post.
85’ GOAL! France 4-0 South Korea: Another wonderful goal from France who have kicked off their Women's World Cup campaign in style! Henry lined up the strike from 20 yards out and fired home a strike into the top corner of the South Korean net. What a goal!
France’s 4-0 win over South Korea is the biggest win by a host nation in their opening game of a Women’s World Cup since China defeated Norway 4-0 in 1991.
All three of Amandine Henry's goals for France since the start of 2018 have come from shots outside the box.