2019 Women’s World Cup Group D

2019 Women’s World Cup Group D

England, who are seen as one of main favourites to win the 2019 Women’s World Cup trophy, have been grouped with the likes of Scotland, Argentina and Japan. The Lionesses aim to get their job done in the group stages as soon as possible, but fellow Group D teams will surely give 100% to spoil their party in France.

England

England women’s national football team have been making progress year by year. The Lionesses did well to win the bronze medal at the 2015 Women’s World Cup finals, with the team beating Germany in the third-place play-off game after extra-time. England aim to, at least, repeat the success and many football experts believe that Phil Neville’s team will shine at the upcoming tournament in France.

England’s road to France was nice and easy, with the team scoring 29 goals in the 2019 World Cup qualifiers, while conceding only 1. The Lionesses dropped only two points in the process as they played out a goalless draw with Wales at St. Mary’s Stadium in Southampton. Nikita Parris was the team’s top scorer in the qualifiers, with the Manchester City attacker scoring 6 goals in the process. Anyhow, England looked impressive in front of goal and the fact that they managed to keep no less than seven clean sheets in the 2019 Women’s World Cup qualifiers is certainly giving fans a reason for optimism.

Phil Neville has a number of experienced players to choose from and that could prove to be the team’s advantage in Group D matches against Scotland, Argentina and Japan. England rolled over Japan at the 2019 SheBelieves Cup, with the team beating the likes of Brazil and Spain in warm-up matches as well. The Lionesses have big ambitions for the World Cup finals in France, but they need to prove their worth on the field.

The likes of Jodie Taylor, Lucy Bronze and Steph Houghton are considered one of the team’s most important players, but England will have to play as a team at this summer’s major tournament in France if they are to record their best result at the World Cup finals. Anyhow, we believe that England are going to clinch top position in Group D as they looked unstoppable in the qualifiers.

Scotland

Scotland, yet another United Kingdom country, will compete in Group D at the 2019 Women’s World Cup finals. Shelley Kerr’s charges are ready for their World Cup debut, but they are considered big underdogs in their opener against England. Scotland have nothing to lose in their first ever appearance at the major tournament, but, one thing is for sure, players will gain a much-needed experience.

Scotland kicked off their 2019 Women’s World Cup qualifying campaign with back-to-back victories over Belarus (2-1) and Albania (5-0), but Switzerland proved to be a big catch for Shelley Kerr’s troops in their third group game. However, the Scottish women quickly bounced back from the loss and eventually won each of their last five games in Group B. Despite suffering the aforementioned loss to Switzerland, Scotland clinched top position in their qualifying group and booked their place at the Women’s World Cup finals for the first time in the national team’s history.

Shelley Kerr’s women continued with fine displays in warm-up games and you should bear in mind that they are on a five-game unbeaten run ahead of their World Cup opener against England. Scotland proved their worth in a hard-fought 1-0 win over star-studded Brazil in April, but they will have a much bigger fish to fry against the Lionesses.

The likes of Rachel Corsie, Jennifer Beattie and Kim Little are regarded as the team’s key players and all eyes will be on the trio when Scotland make their World Cup debut on June 9. The defensive partnership of Corsie and Beattie will have to be in a perfect working order at the 2019 Women’s World Cup finals if they are to help the Scotland Women’s national team make it to the knockout stages. Kim Little will be the women to watch in Shelley Kerr’s team as well as she scored eight goals for Arsenal in the 2018/2019 Women’s Super League season.

Scotland have slim chances of securing a top-two finish in Group D, but given their promising form, they are definitely capable of beating Argentina and clinch third place in the standings.

Argentina

Speaking of Argentina, the Albicelestes booked their place at the 2019 Women’s World Cup thanks to a win over CONCACAF side Panama in the two-legged tie. It has been 12 years since Argentina played their last game at the World Cup finals, meaning that they are hungry for some top-class football. Anyhow, the whole nation’s pride will be at stake when Jose Carlos Borrello’s troops take on Japan on June 10, 2019 in the opening match of their World Cup campaign.

Argentina were having their ups and downs at the 2018 Copa America Femenina. The Albicelestes recorded three wins and suffered one loss in Group B and, as a result, they advanced to the next phase. When they defeated Colombia 3-1 in the final stage, many people expected that they would go all the way at the 2018 Copa America, but they eventually suffered back-to-back defeats to Brazil and Chile and finished the process in third position in the standings.

By winning bronze medal at the Copa America Femenina, Jose Carlos Borrello’s team set up a meeting with Panama in the Women’s WC Qualification Intercontinental Play-offs. Argentina crushed Panama 4-0 in the first leg in Buenos Aires and thanks to a 1-1 draw with Victor Suarez’s team in the return leg in Ciudad de Panama the South American side qualified for the 2019 World Cup finals.

Belen Potassa, Soledad Jaimes and Estefania Banini are the team’s key players. Estefan Banini scored three goals at the 2018 Copa America Femenina and the 163-cm-tall Levante midfielder is likely to play an important role in Jose Carlos Borrello’s team at the upcoming showpiece tournament. Belen Potassa found the net in a 3-1 win over Uruguay in the preparation for the World Cup and she is eager to add more goals to her account. Soledad Jaimes, on the other hand, did remarkably well to clinch the Champions League trophy with Olympique Lyon.

Argentina have been handed a tough draw at the 2019 Women’s World Cup, which is probably the main reason why we do not believe they will advance to the knockout stages of the tournament.

Japan

Eight years ago Japan impressed at the World Cup finals in Germany and won their first ever trophy at the major tournament. The Asian team were determined to repeat the success in 2015, but they were not on top of their game in the decider against USA and, as a result, the Stars and Stripes eventually regained the title.

Japan, though, did remarkably well to win the 2018 AFC Women’s Asian Cup, with the team beating Australia 1-0 in the title game. Kumi Yokoyama scored a late winner for the Japanese girls and helped the national team qualify for the 2019 Women’s World Cup finals. Asako Takakura’s women aim to climb to the top of the world football once again, but their performances in warm-up games were anything but terrific.

Following back-to-back defeats to the likes of England and France, Japan shared the spoils with Germany in April. It is more than obvious that Asako Takakura’s team struggle at the back, but they are definitely capable of beating the likes of Scotland and Argentina in Group D. Group derby against England will be a real football festival.

Coach Asako Takakura has a number of young and talented players to choose from, but all eyes will be on the experienced duo Saki Kumagai – Rumi Utsugi when Japan face Argentina on June 10, 2019 in their 2019 World Cup opener. Aforementioned striker Kumi Yokoyama, who has netted over 100 goals in her club career, will be yet another woman to watch in the Asian side at the upcoming tournament in France.

Japan’s recent record at the World Cup finals is impressive and you should bear in mind that they recorded nine wins in previous ten games at the major tournament. Taking everything into account, Japan head into the 2019 World Cup finals in great spirits and given their huge experience, it is no surprise bookies offer low odds for Kumi Yokoyama and Co. to win the trophy.

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