By Tom Garry
BBC Sport at Parc des Princes
Hosts France opened the 2019 Women’s World Cup with a dazzling triumph over South Korea in front of an overjoyed, sold-out crowd in Paris.
Corinne Diacre’s side, among the favourites to win the 8th edition of this competitors, produced a breathless efficiency to take a deserved 3-0 lead at half-time thanks to forward Eugenie Le Sommer’s early opener and 2 headers from towering protector Wendie Renard.
Midfielder Amandine Henry curled in an excellent 4th objective late on, much to the delight of the 45,261 fans inside the Parc des Princes.
England and Scotland will fulfill on Sunday in Nice as they get their campaigns under way, with a total of 24 groups participating wishing to reach the last in Lyon on 7 July.
Safeguarding champions the United States will get their campaign under way against Thailand on Tuesday, with England and two-time winners Germany among the other groups being strongly tipped for success.
Six groups of four teams will compete for the 16 places in the knockout stage, with the leading two teams in each group qualifying immediately, in addition to the 4 best third-placed sides.
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France show qualifications with ‘energy, motion and pushing’
France, 4th in the world rankings and intending to end up being just the 2nd host nation to lift the trophy, might well take home the greatest reward if they continue to play as they did against South Korea.
Backed by deafening support the house side began the match with rate, strength and impressive desire.
Henry curled narrowly wide inside the very first 2 minutes, prior to squaring the ball in to Le Summer season’s path for the Lyon star to open to scoring soon later on, and talismanic centre-back Renard included two headers from corners before the break.
South Korea, ranked 14 th in the world, were mainly beat but midfielder Lee Min-a put large from their best opportunity in the 2nd half, after an uncommon error from Renard.
The French beginning group consisted of 7 of the Lyon team that beat Barcelona to win European football’s biggest women’s club competition, the Champions League, in Might, including goalscorers Le Sommer and Renard.
Chelsea star Ji So-yun and West Ham’s Cho So-hyun were both in South Korea’s midfield, which was overrun in the early stages by France’s energy, motion and pressing.
VAR makes impression on tournament debut
Griedge Mbock Bathy believed she had volleyed in France’s second objective but it was ruled out for a fractional offside decision by the video assistant referee system.
VAR is being used in the Women’s World Cup for the very first time and the French fans booed and whistled in aggravation at both the length of time it required to review the footage and the decision itself.
However replays showed that the authorities had actually been right with Mbock Barthy’s foot in an offside position, albeit by the smallest of margins.
Gamer of the Match – Wendie Renard (France)
Quick off the mark – the stats
- This was the greatest win by a host nation at a Women’s World Cup since 2003 when USA beat Nigeria 5-0.
- The eventual winners have actually started their project with a victory in all previous 7 competitions to date.
- France have actually won their opening match at their last three World Cup competitions. South Korea have lost their opening match at all 3 finals.
- South Korea did not sign up an effort until the 70 th minute.
- France have kept a tidy sheet in all 7 of their World Cup wins.
- Eugenie Le Sommer’s goal after nine minutes was the fastest in an opening game.
- Only Marie-Laure Delie (5) has scored more tournament goals for France then Le Sommer (4 ).
- Wendie Renard became the 4th player to score a World Cup double for France, no-one has ever gone on to score a hat-trick.
- 10 of Renard’s last 11 objectives for France have been headers.
- Le Sommer and Amandine Henry have both now scored at successive World Cup tournaments. They are the 3rd and fourth players to score in two various editions for France.