FIFA U-17 WC: Amine, Yacine shine in France's 7-1 drubbing of New Caledonia

Star striker Amine Gouiri scored a brace, while forward Yacine Adli impress with three assists as France defeated New Caledonia 7-1 in the inaugural Group E match.

Yacine Adli (L) and Amine Gouiri (R) formed a lethal combination as they scored two goals and crafted three assists among themselves in France's 7-1 win over New Caledonia.

The sight of a falling New Caledonian goalkeeper Une Kecine was all too recurrent. And that pretty much summed up the 7-1 drubbing the little French colony received at the hands of European giant, France, in the inaugural Group-E match of the FIFA Under-17 World Cup at the Indira Gandhi Athletic Stadium here on Sunday.

Under hot and humid conditions, France held its own to script a dominating performance, toying with the opponent from both flanks.

Starting with a 4-5-1 formation, which was expected, given the stature of its opponent, Caledonia failed miserably to put up a strong defensive wall. Truth be said, the side just couldn’t stand up to the speed and guile of the former champion.

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France’s star striker Amine Gouiri did his reputation no harm with two strikes that displayed his pace, agility and striking abilities in full measure.

While forward Willem Geubbels impressed with his imagination early in the first half, it was Yacine Adli who provided the impetus with three beautiful assists.

Ironically, it was an own goal that opened the floodgates for France. In an attempt to put away a cross from Willem, Iwa Bernard dabbed his left foot into the post.

MATCH CENTRE

A wonderful one-two between Yacine and Maxence Caqueret saw the latter pass it to Amine, who scored his first goal of the night and his side's second. Amine was involved in the third goal as he received Yacine's pass and played out a cross which was duly struck home by captain Claudio Gomes.

Amine completed his brace as he toe-poked one past the ‘keeper to make it 4-0 off another assist from Yacine. 

Another own goal by Kiam Wanesse only made things worse for the debutante. The  first half revealed the gulf in quality between the two teams.

France had the opportunity to score one more, minutes into the second half, but Maxence’s penalty was saved by ‘keeper Une. Compared to the first half where France had 72 per cent ball possession, the second session saw France  understandably slow down the pace.

If New Caledonia thought it could do a Niger, it proved that it had a long way to go to do so.

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The results:

France 7 (Iwa Bernard 14 (own goal), Amine Gouiri 20 & 32, Claudio Gomes 29, Maxence Caqueret 39th, Kiam Wanesse (own goal) 43, Wilson Isidor 90+2) bt New Caledonia 1 (Sidri Wadenges 90).