England Lose World Cup Match On Penalty Kicks

Perhaps, on a bookshelf in the offices of the Football Association at Wembley Stadium, there is a leather-bound book called “How To Get Knocked Out Of  A Major Tournament”. It’s a well-thumbed tome, of course, and the England team at this year’s Women’s World Cup couldn’t help but crib from its extensive advice in getting themselves eliminated from this year’s tournament at the hands of France at the end of a tumultuous match in Leverkusen last night. Twice last night England were within touching distance of a place the semi-finals of the competition, the rewards of which were blown wide open with the stunning defeat of Germany at the hands of Japan last night, but on this occasion it was not to be. For all of the disappointment that the England team might feel this morning, though, the cold light of day reveals that, on the night, the best team won the match. France dominated possession from the very start and England’s goal came from a break and with the assistance of some poor positioning by the French goalkeeper. Still, though, England clung on, defending with increasing desperation until, with two minutes of the ninety on the clock left to play, France finally managed to crowbar their way back into the game. Extra-time was a slog, a game of attack versus defence which saw French players flit around the...

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