#FIFAWWC Qualifiers: France win with stoppage-time penalty

Amel Majri's late penalty gave France victory
Amel Majri netted a decisive late penalty for France. (Photo: Anthony Bibard via Imago)

France just got away from Slovenia with three FIFA Women’s World Cup qualifying points and Germany trailed Serbia before winning 5-1.

Group A: Finland edged Slovakia 2-1, Ria Öling with the winner after Adelina Engman’s opened had been cancelled out. Manchester City’s Filippa Angeldal and Magdalena Eriksson of Chelsea had Sweden two up over Georgia at half-time, Caroline Seger doubled the tally with two late goals, one from the spot.

Group B: Spain scored seven in Hungary, with braces by Mariona Caldentey, Amaiur Sarriega Isasa and Esther Gonzalez. Chloe Arthur got her first two goals for Scotland as the Faroe Islands were sent to a 7-1 defeat.

Group C: The Netherlands netted midway through either half for a 2-0 victory in Iceland, Danielle van de Donk and Manchester United’s Jackie Groenen the scorers. Czech Republic scored four times in each half for an 8-0 defeat of Cyprus.

Group D: England scored ten times in Luxembourg, with braces by Ellen White, Alex Greenwood (on her 50th appearance and Millie Bright, who scored her first goals for the Lionesses. Nicole Billa netted a treble as Austria hit hosts North Macedonia for six. Northern Ireland beat Latvia 4-0, a goal each for Louise McDaniel, Kirsty McGuinness, Marissa Callaghan and a Rachel Furness penalty.

Group E: Denmark scored eight times away to Azerbaijan, Stine Larsen leading the way with three goals. Malta recovered a two-goal deficit to hold Bosnia & Herzegovina 2-2, Stefania Farrugia equalising five minutes into stoppage-time. Russia put five past Montenegro with a hat-trick by Nadezhda Smirnova.

Group F: Poland’s Weronika Zawistowska got the only goal midway through the first half to clinch the points in Armenia. Belgium beat Albania 7-0, aided by an eight-minute hat-trick from substitute Jassina Blom. Norway were 3-0 winners in Kosovo, an own-goal added to by Julie Blakstad and Lisa-Marie Utland.

Switxzerland won 6-0 in Moldova
Sandrine Mauron of Switzerland and Carolina Tabur of Moldova. (Photo: Aleksandar Djorovic/JustPictures.ch via Imago)

Group G: Valentina Giacinti was on target twice as Italy won 5-0 away to Croatia. Switzerland took 39 minutes to break down hosts Moldova but then scored four times in six minutes, Aston Villa’s Alisha Lehmann came off the bench to make it 6-0 late on. Laura Rus scored in either half during Romania’s 3-0 win against Lithuania.

Group H: Serbia gave Germany a shock with a third-minute goal by Nina Matejic, a lead they held until early in the second half. But then Lea Schüller scored four times and Chelsea’s Melanie Leupolz was also on target for a 5-1 scoreline.

Group I: There was late penalty drama as France came from behind to win 3-2 away to Slovenia. Marie-Antoinette Katoto scored twice after Lara Prašnikar’s opener, Mateja Zver converted an 88th-minute penalty to equalise, only for Amel Majri to also score from the spot deep into added time.

Wales won 1-0 in Estonia, Natasha Harding’s goal five minutes in proved sufficient, Greece held on to defeat Kazakhstan 3-2, Anastasia Spyridonidou having earlier bagged a brace.

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