England, Scotland drawn alongside Japan in same women's World Cup group

General view of the final groups during the draw ceremony for the FIFA Women's World Cup France 2019 in Paris, France, on Dec 8, 2018.
General view of the final groups during the draw ceremony for the FIFA Women's World Cup France 2019 in Paris, France, on Dec 8, 2018.PHOTO: EPA-EFE

BOULOGNE-BILLANCOURT, FRANCE (AFP) - England and Scotland will meet each other in their opening game at the 2019 women's World Cup in France after being placed in the same group at Saturday's (Dec 8) draw ceremony alongside former winners Japan as well as Argentina.

Old rivals England and Scotland will meet in Nice in their opening game in Group D on June 9. They also met in their opening group game at Euro 2017 in the Netherlands, with England romping to a 6-0 victory on their way to a semi-final defeat at the hands of the hosts.

Phil Neville's side were also semi-finalists at the 2015 World Cup in Canada, losing to Japan, while Scotland will be making their debut at the finals next year.

Japan lost 5-2 to the United States in the 2015 final in Vancouver, and the reigning champions were drawn in Group F along with Sweden, Thailand and tournament newcomers Chile.

Australia were among the top seeds but Alen Stajcic's side must face Brazil and Italy as well as Jamaica in Group C.

Tournament hosts France are in Group A along with South Korea, Norway and Nigeria.

Corinne Diacre's side will play South Korea in Paris in the opening game on June 7, while the final of the 24-team competition will be held in Lyon on July 7 next year.