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France’s Les Bleues defeat Nigeria’s Super Falcons in tough FIFA Women’s World Cup clash

Odiase Osayande

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The Super falcons of Nigeria lost 1-0 to France which left their world cup hopes hanging by a thread.

Wendie Renard went from villain to hero in the space of two minutes, scoring her retaken penalty after a double VAR check to ensure France progress to the last-16 having topped Group A.

The performances of French players surely
hoping to play their way into contention for the latter stages of the competition were wanting, with the forward Viviane Asseyi of Bordeaux and Paris FC’s Charlotte Bilbault particularly anonymous.

As the teams came out of the tunnel mobile
phone lights were held aloft, perhaps hoping to prompt a more electric response on the pitch.

France looked to match the instant breakthrough they made against Norway, a Gaëtane Thiney free-kick was whipped on to the head of Renard but she could not direct it goalwards.

There was more purpose to France’s play, Amal Majri and Asseyi looked to even up their lopsided attack on the left, but the latter’s mazy runs were lacking the final ball, short passes picked off with ease by the organised Nigeria back line – a lack of
understanding with her teammates evident.
France should have taken the lead when, under no pressure, Thiney fired wide of the goal after a Cascarino cut-back. In order to perhaps reinstall some fluidity, on came Diani and Le Sommer to a roar of delight from the crowd.

READ: See the 20 most expensive footballers in the world – with Ronaldo at No.20

Asseyi now out wide in Cascarino’s place, she instantly looked better for the move. A delightful cross just missed by an onrushing Thiney.

Super falcons lose to France

Super falcons lose to France 

It was a moment of madness that killed Nigerian hopes, Ebere felling a rejuvenated Asseyi from behind and up stepped Renard to take the spot kick after a pause to consult the VAR. Her stuttered run and tame effort pinged off the post but after another VAR check Chiamaka Nnadozie was adjudged to have moved off her line before the ball was hit and Renard had a shot at redemption, this time making no mistake.

The Falcons will now wait for the other group games to be completed to find out if they reached the last 16 round.

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