France triumphed over Brazil with a 2-1 victory in the WWC 2023

Photo of France's victory over Brazil in WWC2023

France's victory over Brazil with a 2-1 in WWC2023.

France has firmly positioned itself to secure a spot in the last 16 of the Women’s World Cup following a hard-fought 2-1 victory over Brazil, courtesy of Wendie Renard’s late header. Right from the start, France dominated the game, and the seasoned forward, Eugenie Le Sommer, justified their control by opening the scoring on the 17th minute. She skillfully met Kadidiatou Diani’s perfectly timed header, nodding the ball past Letícia in Brazil’s goal. Le Sommer’s journey to this moment was not without challenges.

She had not been selected for the Euro 2021 squad and was also left out during the World Cup qualifiers, making her wonder if she would ever play for Les Bleues again. However, the new head coach, Hervé Renard, who previously coached Saudi Arabia at the men’s World Cup in December, chose her for the team, and here she was, once again, shining on the grandest stage.

With that goal, Le Sommer accomplished an impressive milestone of scoring her 90th goal for France and her sixth in a World Cup, establishing herself as one of the greatest goal scorers of her generation.

Epic confrontation of the giants

Following a tense start, Brazil gradually found their groove as the first half unfolded. Debinha displayed her magical footwork, setting up Adriana brilliantly inside the penalty area, but unfortunately, Adriana’s shot missed the target, going high and wide. In the second half, Canarinhas continued to improve and eventually got the reward they deserved when Debinha took the spotlight in Brisbane.

There was a stroke of luck in the build-up as Kerolin’s shot deflected into Debinha’s path, but the forward reacted swiftly, executing a sublime touch with the outside of her boot before firing the ball past Pauline Peyraud-Magnin.

The match truly lived up to its billing as a blockbuster encounter, with both teams relentlessly attacking in search of a decisive goal. Then, with only seven minutes left, the imposing presence of Renard, standing at 6 feet 2 inches, found herself unmarked at the far post and expertly headed Selma Bacha’s corner into the net, leaving Letícia with little chance to save. Despite the introduction of the legendary forward Marta in the final five minutes, welcomed with thunderous cheers, Brazil couldn’t find a second equalizer.

The three points earned by France sparked immense joy and celebration at the final whistle, as it provided a much-needed boost following their goalless draw against Jamaica in the opening match. On the other hand, Brazil remains on three points after their convincing 4-0 victory over Panama in the first match. A win against Jamaica will guarantee their spot in the last 16.

Sweden delivers a crushing defeat to Italy

Sweden secured their spot in the knockout stages with a commanding 5-0 victory over Italy in a previous match. While their opening Group G match against South Africa resulted in a narrow 1-0 win, Sweden displayed their best form against Italy, scoring three late first-half goals to seal the game.

Italy showcased a resilient defense for much of the first half, but their resistance was finally broken six minutes before halftime when Amanda Ilestedt, who recently joined Arsenal Women, headed home from a corner kick.

This goal opened the floodgates for Sweden, and they quickly doubled their lead through Fridolina Rolfö, taking advantage of more sloppy Italian defending from a corner. Stina Blackstenius added a third goal in stoppage time, capitalizing on a well-executed Swedish attack. Just five minutes into the second half, Ilestedt struck again, heading home from a corner to secure her second goal of the match.

In injury time, Rebecka Blomqvist further extended Sweden’s lead, calmly slotting the ball past the onrushing Italian goalkeeper, Francesca Durante, after receiving a well-placed long pass. This outstanding performance solidifies Sweden’s position as one of the top contenders capable of challenging the US in the Australia and New Zealand tournament.

The team came close to living up to their country’s ‘Golden Generation’ label two years ago, reaching the gold medal match at the rescheduled 2020 Olympic Games, where they faced defeat against Canada.

The victory against Italy is Sweden’s most significant Women’s World Cup win since their impressive 8-0 triumph over Japan in 1991. Having reached the semifinals in Euro 2022 and the World Cup four years ago in France, Sweden’s current performance puts them on course to match or even surpass their previous achievements.

Despite the heavy defeat, Italy still has a strong chance of qualifying for the round of 16. A victory over South Africa would secure their place in the knockout stages, and even a draw would be enough if Sweden defeats Argentina as expected.


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