Brazil has learnt their lessons from their 2019 Women’s World Cup exit and are eager to take on France again in the showpiece event on Saturday, four years after losing to the Europeans in the first knockout round.
After thrashing Panama 4-0 in its opener, Brazil sits top of Group F with three points and can seal qualification to the knockout stage with a win at Lang Park. France has one point after it was held to a goalless draw by Jamaica.
Brazil are on an 11-game winless run against France, having lost six games and drawn five. Their mouth-watering clash on Saturday will be a repeat of the last 16 clash from the 2019 tournament, which hosts France won 2-1 after extra time.
“It was definitely a bitter loss for us,” midfielder Luana, who played in that game, told reporters on Friday. “It taught us to pay attention to the details, to concentrate on set pieces and look after their best players.
“I think we are ready.”
France could face Brazil without captain Wendie Renard in defence after she sustained a calf injury against Jamaica on Sunday.
“We have one plan if she plays, and one plan if she does not,” Brazil coach Pia Sundhage said.
Brazil have reached the knockouts in the last six World Cups but never lifted the trophy, finishing runners-up in 2007.
Sundhage, who took charge after Brazil’s 2019 World Cup exit, praised her team’s dazzling performance in their opening match but challenged them to be even more clinical against France.
“Sometimes they are out there and they try to be too fancy,” Sundhage said. “Sometimes there are too many passes, sometimes not enough! Typical Brazil.
“When they are fancy and it works it is beautiful. But sometimes I have to remind them that scoring goals is also pretty cool.”
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