Women's World Cup 2019

Own goal proves France can be fallible: Renard

France's Eugenie Le Sommer celebrating with Amel Majri after scoring the winner from the penalty spot against Norway in Group A of the Women's World Cup on Wednesday. The 2-1 win in Nice put the hosts on the brink of a place in the last 16. PHOTO: RE
France's Eugenie Le Sommer celebrating with Amel Majri after scoring the winner from the penalty spot against Norway in Group A of the Women's World Cup on Wednesday. The 2-1 win in Nice put the hosts on the brink of a place in the last 16. PHOTO: REUTERS

NICE • Wendie Renard has said that her own goal in a 2-1 win over Norway on Wednesday came as a reminder that France need to learn not to be carried away by good results if they are to claim their first Women's World Cup title.

The centre-back deflected Isabell Herlovsen's cross into her own goal as Norway equalised following Valerie Gauvin's opener, five days after she had scored a double in a 4-0 win over South Korea in the opening Group A game.

"It shows that you need to keep your feet on the ground," said the Lyon defender.

Her error was cancelled out by Eugenie Le Sommer's penalty in the 72nd minute after a video assistant referee (VAR) review, which put Les Bleues top of the group on six points and needing a draw against Nigeria on Monday to advance to the last 16.

"We did what we had to do in the second half. We reacted well after my own goal, we stayed focused," Renard added.

"In the end, we managed to get that penalty and we're almost qualified."

France coach Corinne Diacre was pleased with the hard-fought win.

"It was not easy. We played with our heads against tough opponents. We know we're not going to win all our games 4-0," she said.

Norway coach Martin Sjogren lamented the VAR decision and said he was not sure if it was a penalty or not, after Ingrid Engen appeared to kick Marion Torrent.

"We lost the match, but I thought we were equal with the French. Of course, there are many feelings after the match," he said.

"Sometimes you can handle these feelings and sometimes not. We knew that we were going to face very good opponents and I think we had a good plan."

In Wednesday's other match, Sara Dabritz scored the only goal of the game as Germany beat Spain 1-0 in Group B to all but secure a spot in the next round.

The two-time champions, who also beat China 1-0 in their opener, are on six points, with Spain in second on three.

China and South Africa have yet to collect points before their match yesterday.

REUTERS

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on June 14, 2019, with the headline 'Own goal proves France can be fallible: Renard'. Print Edition | Subscribe