Women soccer loses to France

Updated: 2007-03-01 09:40

China's women's football team lost 2-0 to France early on Thursday, their last warm-up game before the upcoming Algarve Cup in Portugal.

A French player tries to break through from a limited room between two Chinese players who make best to get the ball. [Osports.cn]

China was unable to keep up with the pace the French set from the start of the match and their frontline was in a state of disorder with rising star Ma Xiaoxu absent.

Ma Xiaoxu, a candidate for the reputable sports Laureus Awards this year, has been transferred to Swedish champions Umea IK on loan and will withdraw from the Portuguese tournament.

China failed to shoot before the 22nd minute when Han Duan drove a long shot outside the penalty box. She failed to convert it into a goal as it was easily caught by the rival team's goalie.

The team almost scored later in the game but Liu Sa lost the ball when she hesitated just a fraction too long after receiving an overhead pass from Han Duan.

The disorganized Chinese team gifted their rivals with unexpectedly large gaps in their defense. Despite this, the inexperienced French did not score until the 47th minute when Thirney Gaelane drove the ball straight over keeper Zhang Yanru's head and into the net.

Acting head coach Wang Haiming made a series of changes to the line-up after the goal in the hope of an equalizer but his efforts came to nothing. China conceded a second goal to France before the match closed.

Wang will soon take his squad to Portugal where they will go head to head with the United States, Sweden and Finland in the group round.

Top Sports News  
Today's Top News  
Most Commented/Read Stories in 48 Hours