Published: Sat, June 08, 2019
Sport | By Kayla Schwartz

Blue, white and red Paris celebrates women's World Cup kick off

Blue, white and red Paris celebrates women's World Cup kick off

The country is home to Europe's leading club side, with Lyon last month winning a fourth consecutive Champions League, but the national team lost in the quarter-finals of the last World Cup, the last European Championship and the 2016 Olympics.

For over an hour on Saturday, one of the Women's World Cup favorites looked a bit disconnected and unimaginative.

As women's soccer has become more popular, it's also become more competitive.

Watch the 2019 FIFA Women's World Cup on FOX beginning June 7.

France's men's side won the 2018 World Cup in Russian Federation for their second world title after they triumphed at home in 1998.

When the two teams face off there will no doubt be residual sentiments from a 1972 match in which England beat their counterparts to the north in what was their first official women's worldwide match, before Federation Internationale de Football Association even allowed women to play in their organization.

Dunn wants the US team to inspire the next generation of players by "stepping on the pitch and being like "I want to win this game and I'm going to do whatever it takes" she said, adding "it's about grinding through these games and being that last team standing".

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"I could not have dreamed for more than this", Henry said. "We're playing well in the moment, but we've got to keep our feet on the ground and we need to continue working", France coach Corinne Diacre said.

The venue for the semi-finals and the final is Groupama Stadium, where Lyon Feminine play some of their home matches. They begin their campaign against unfancied Thailand in Reims, in Champagne country, next Tuesday.

The Swedes denied the USA a podium finish for the first time in history.

Later on Saturday, in the same group, Spain take on South Africa in the northern port of Le Havre at 1600 GMT, with the Banyana Banyana hoping to make a big impression in their first World Cup appearance.

One of those threats is in the same group - Sweden, the team that knocked the USA out of the 2016 Olympics in the quarterfinals and gave other teams a defensive roadmap to beat the defending World Cup champs.

The Norwegians are confident of going far despite being without Ada Hegerberg, the victor of the women's Ballon d'Or victor for the world's top player.

England's first game in the tournament is against Scotland on Sunday. The 2018 FIFA Ballon d'Or victor has stepped down from the national team because of what she says are differences in the way the federation treats the men's and women's teams. The French women's team have never been world champions.

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