FIFA Women’s World Cup: France defeats Morocco to go to the quarterfinals against Australia

FIFA Women’s World Cup: France defeats Morocco to go to the quarterfinals against Australia – Eugenie Le Sommer scored twice as France defeated Morocco 4-0 in the Women’s World Cup on Tuesday, advancing to the quarter-finals against co-hosts Australia.

FIFA Women's World Cup: France defeats Morocco to go to the quarterfinals against Australia

In their first appearance in the tournament, Morocco shocked the odds by qualifying for the last 16 at the cost of Germany, however, they were unable to defeat Herve Renard’s French side in Adelaide.

Kadidiatou Diani scored on the quarter-hour mark, while Kenza Dali and Le Sommer added goals just after the half-hour mark to make it 3-0.

Le Sommer, France’s all-time leading scorer, scored again 20 minutes from time in front of a crowd of 13,557 as Les Bleues moved to the final eight with no fuss.

They will now face Australia in Brisbane on Saturday, with the winner facing either England or Colombia in the semi-finals.

“We accomplished our goal. “You always want a little bit more, but that’s fine,” Renard told M6.

As hosts in 2019, France was eliminated in the quarter-finals by eventual winners the United States.

A win over Australia would equal their best-ever World Cup result, when they reached the final four in 2011.

“We have matched our performance from four years ago, but our goal was to outperform our performance from 2011, so we know what we need to do.”

When asked if his squad could beat the Matildas in front of a hostile crowd, he replied, “We are capable of doing it, but it won’t be easy, albeit not for either team.”

Morocco entered this match with less pressure because their World Cup was already a tremendous success, whereas France is keen to win its first major women’s international championship.

Morocco coach Reynald Pedros expressed pride in his players, even in defeat, after defying the odds to reach this round.

“I am not disappointed because we were in the last 16 of the World Cup for the first time and we know very well that the further on you go, the harder it gets,” the former French international midfielder remarked.

“I am very happy with our run, and I wish France luck and hope they go on to be world champions.”

Gulf in its class

Pedros picked the same starting lineup that defeated Colombia 1-0 to secure their berth in the knockout round.

Renard made five changes from France’s 6-3 victory over Panama, including returning Sakina Karchaoui at left-back.

Karchaoui, whose parents are Moroccan, created the opening goal with a powerful run down the left wing, a quick exchange of passes with Selma Bacha, and a cross for Diani to tip in.

Read more: Women’s FIFA World Cup 2023: Colombia reach quarter-final for the first time after defeating Jamaica

Diani scored her fourth goal of the tournament, following her hat-trick against Panama in the last group game.

The second goal came in the 20th minute when Diani sent the ball back for Dali to sweep home a first-time finish off the far post.

Three minutes later, it was 3-0 because of a defensive blunder by Nesryne El Chad, who attempted to clear but only succeeded in passing the ball off Diani, who set up Le Sommer.

FIFA Women's World Cup: France defeats Morocco to go to the quarterfinals against Australia

Morocco might have expected an even worse setback than the 6-0 thrashing they got from Germany in their opening game at that moment.

France, on the other hand, took their foot off the gas after that and only scored once more.

Substitute Vicki Becho crossed from the right for Le Sommer to head in her 92nd international goal at the back post in the 70th minute.

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