Women's World Cup Recap - France vs. Nigeria|
(Sunday, June 26, 2011)
From The Sports Network
Final Score: France 1, Nigeria 0
Sinsheim, Germany (Sports Network) - France opened the 2011 Women's World Cup
in successful fashion on Sunday with a 1-0 win over Nigeria in Group A play
courtesy of Marie-Laure Delie's second-half goal.
Making only its second appearance at the Women's World Cup, France nearly
opened the scoring after 18 minutes as a low corner kick from Louisa Necib was
driven toward the near post, where Gaetane Thiney was able to redirect it off
the post from a tight angle.
Nigeria relied mostly on counter attack play and the Super Falcons wasted a
great chance in the 25th minute when Glory Iroka released Desire Oparanozie
down the right wing. Oparanozie was able to carry the ball into the penalty
area and had only France goalkeeper Berangere Sapowicz to beat, but she badly
scuffed her shot wide.
The second half saw France start to gain more control of the match and the
lone goal arrived in the 56th minute when substitute Eugenie Le Sommer's
right-wing cross was flicked on by Necib into the path of Delie, who took a
touch to settle before smacking her shot past goalkeeper Precious Dede.
Nigeria failed to seriously test Sapowicz in the French goal over the final 30
minutes and things will only get tougher for the African side with games
against Germany and Canada still to come.
"Although it was only 1-0, I think this win was very important, as the opening
matches in competitions always are. It'll give us maximum confidence for what
lies ahead," Necib said.
France will return to action on June 30 against Canada, while Nigeria will
face the hosts, Germany, on the same day.
"We hadn't planned to defend as much as we did, but nothing is lost yet," said
Nigeria forward Perpetua Nkwocha. "We weren't intimidated by the number of
goals France had scored in their preparation games. We'll now have to attack
more against Germany, and we'll also have to play more as a team and talk to
each other more on the pitch."
06/26 14:36:54 ET