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Published 11 May 2024 4 min read
Women's U17

Report: France 0-1 England WU17s

Written by:

Zac Vassell

Young Lionesses top their U17 EURO group stage after win over France in Sweden


England women’s under-17s faced France in their last group game of the European Under-17 Championships on Saturday, coming away with a hard-fought 1-0 victory.

Attacker Lola Brown proved decisive with a late finish to seal the win with both sides having already sealed qualification for the semi-finals, and top spot in group A being the winner's prize from this fixture.

The reigning WU17s champions France controlled the game from the outset, dominating possession in the first half but there was little joy for either side in front of goal, as clear-cut chances were difficult to come by in the first 45 minutes

The standout chance of the half falling to French attacker Justine Rouquet, with the Young Lionesses needing a strong save from Hope McSheffrey to keep the scores level.

McSheffrey was called upon again to start the second half, pulling off an outstanding reflex save to deny Rouquet from opening the scoring. And they would meet again minutes later, with McSheffrey providing more heroics to maintain the deadlock.

The Young Lionesses' starting line-up for their final group stage game against France
The Young Lionesses' starting line-up for their final group stage game against France
The Young Lionesses would soon have their chance, after a raking ball through by captain Laila Harbert to striker Isabella Fisher. Fisher could only fire straight at the keeper however, keeping the scores even.

But with France continuing to pile on the pressure throughout the half, it took until the 81st minute for the Lionesses to break through. The goal came courtesy of a mishandled cross from Nelly Las, with Chelsea winger Brown able to roll the ball into an empty net from close range.

With the decisive action of the half, Brown's strike was enough to take the Young Lionesses into top spot of group A. They now await their fate in the semi-finals on Wednesday, as they will face either Spain, Poland or Portugal depending on results in the final Group B fixtures on Sunday.

England: 1 Hope McSheffrey (Arsenal), 2 Nelly Las (Leicester City), 3 Rachel Maltby (Aston Villa), 4 Laila Harbert (Arsenal/Watford) ©, 6 Cecily Wellesley-Smith (Oxford United), 7 Erica Parkinson (FC Valadares), 9 Isabella Fisher (Arsenal), 11 Lola Brown (Chelsea), 15 Niamh Peacock (Arsenal), 19 Isabel Hebard (Devon ETC), 20 Jane Oboavwoduo (Manchester City)

Substitutes: 14 Emily Cassap (Sunderland) for Parkinson 73’, 16 Olivia Hibbert-Johnson (Brighton Hove & Albion) for Hebard 73’, 17 Eva Gray (Arsenal) for Fisher 86’

Goals: Lola Brown 81’

Head Coach: Natalie Henderson