Corinne Diacre says France need more ‘efficiency’ after narrow win over Belgium


France boss Corinne Diacre was delighted with her side’s progression to the quarter-finals of Euro 2022 with a narrow 2-1 win over Belgium at New York Stadium, but believes the “efficiency” against Italy was lacking.

France took an early lead when Sakina Karchaoui fired a ball to the far post for Kadidiatou Diani to nod off from close range.

Belgium equalized against the flow of play in the 36th minute when Janice Cayman shot home past an oncoming Pauline Peyraud-Magnin, but France restored their deserved lead five minutes later when Griedge Mbock Bathy headed in emphatically from close range .

France were awarded a late penalty after VAR ruled Amber Tysiak treated in the box and received a second yellow card.

France took an early lead when Sakina Karchaoui delivered a ball to the back post for Kadidiatou Diani to nod off from close range (Mike Egerton/PA).

(PA Archive)

Captain Wendie Renard was unable to capitalize, missing both the penalty and the margin, but France were not to be denied a place in the quarter-finals.

After the game, Diacre told a press conference: “We had a lot of chances to score a third goal, but today, in my opinion, there was a lack of efficiency against Italy.

“We know it’s not everyday that we score five goals in the first half and we couldn’t score five goals tonight but we’re through and that’s all that matters.

“The efficiency was a bit different than the game against Italy, but we scored a goal more than Belgium, which means we won that game and are leading our group.”

There were a lot of chances for us to score a third goal, but today I felt we lacked efficiency against Italy

Sakina Karchaoui

France have qualified for the last eight with one game to go and Diacre wants her side to savor the moment ahead of those upcoming games.

“We will rest and enjoy the win and make the most of those joyful moments when they arrive,” she said.

“It’s very rare to qualify after two games so it went back to base camp to rest and take stock of injuries tomorrow and then prepare for Iceland.”

Belgium have yet to win a game during the tournament and need a win over Italy in the final group game to advance.

Belgium coach Ives Serneels said: “Everyone gave their all today and it’s unfortunate that the game didn’t reflect that.

“I didn’t think we would concede after six minutes. I won’t be negative because my team made me proud, but tonight we showed exactly what we’re capable of and how beautiful women’s football is.

“We also know that France are very good and have the best European players, we’re talking about the third best team in the world, so I don’t think we should be negative.

“It won’t be a walk in the park against Italy, I’ve worked with this team for a long time and I think they earned their spurs tonight.” Corinne Diacre says France need more ‘efficiency’ after narrow win over Belgium

Fry Electronics Team

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