France vs. South Korea
|Date & Time||Friday June 7, 2019, 3:00 PM (EDT)|
Parc des Princes
The Line: South Korea +1603 / France -702 / Draw +664 -- Over/Under: 3
France and South Korea meet Friday in FIFA Women's World Cup at Parc des Princes.
France has to be excited about hosting the World Cup and becoming the first country to hold both the men’s and women’s titles at the same time. Les Bleues currently has the second-best odds to win this tournament, with the United States being the clear top favorites. France has the combination of talent and experience to get the job done, as there’s nine players with 40-plus caps and four different players with at least 20 international goals scored. Eugenie Le Sommer will eventually be the top scorer in France history, while Amandine Henry is still one of the best at setting up offensive attacks due to her passing ability. A combination of Wendie Renard and Kadidiatou Diani could also produce fireworks if they get going in the open field. Sarah Bouhaddi is also a highly decorated goalie who holds down the fort for a France team that’s allowed one or less goals in each of its last 11 games. If there was ever a time for France to take home the hardware, it’s probably now.
South Korea will participate in its third World Cup, which is an accomplishment in itself for a team that played its first match less than 20 years ago. In the 2015 World Cup, South Korea got to the round of 16 by beating Spain and forcing a draw with Costa Rica. South Korea is a very young team with only four players on its current squad 30 years or older, but there are eight players with 70-plus caps. Ji So-yun is the heartbeat of the offense, as 54 goals makes her the all-time leading scorer, and she’s shined these past few years with Chelsea. So-yun has the type of attacking ability that puts far in opposing defenses. Cho So-hyun is the most experienced player with 120 caps under her belt and Han Chae-rin has the ability to be an x-factor, as the 22-year-old has made the most of limited opportunities. Taegeuk Nangja is a team that’s still coming together and find ways to compete on the big stage. While this may be four years too early, South Korea did show last tournament that you shouldn’t sleep on this bunch.
These teams met in the 2015 World Cup, a match France won 3-0 thanks to two goals from Marie-Laure Delie. France controlled the ball for 62 percent of the match and got five shots goal.
France is the clear better team here with much more depth and better quality of offensive players who can find the back of the net early and often. Throw in this being the opening match on home turf, and France will be up for this one and eager to put on a show. We saw South Korea have defensive issues at times in last years World Cup. France has scored three or more goals in seven of its last nine matches.
I’m going to side with the over in game one.