In the second Group G match of the day, France shutout Colombia 4-0 in Belo Horizonte at Mineirao. France was able to find an early goal and had the better of play from the first whistle.
Les Bleus took an early 1-0 lead in the 2nd minute off an own goal by defender Carolina Arias of Colombia. France’s star forward Eugenie Le Sommer made a run down the right side and sent a pass across the box that Arias deflected into her own net.
In the 14th minute, France would double its lead. After a spell of purposeful possession and movement off the ball, Camille Abily found herself in space and struck a high arching shot towards the goal that hit the crossbar. Le Sommer was in the right spot at the right time and headed the rebound from the crossbar into the net to make it 2-0.
Colombia came close to getting a goal back in the 26th minute when defender Liana Salazar fired a shot from outside the box just over the goal to put a brief scare into the French. Within a minute of that opportunity, France had a chance to extend its lead as Le Sommer was at the heart of France's attack yet again. The skillful and agile forward found herself in front of the goal after a nice combination play with midfielder Elise Bussaglia. However, her shot was parried away on a critical save by Colombian goalie Sandra Sepulveda.
France continued to dictate play throughout the remainder of the first half. Showing excellent transition along with sharp and incisive passing, the French were able to create multiple half-chances that kept Colombia on its heels. The 2015 World Cup quaterfinalists added to their lead in the 42nd minute on a free kick curled into the top corner by Camille Abily from just outside the box. Sepulveda was able to get her hands on the ball but it wasn't enough to keep it out of the net. France entered halftime with a convincing 3-0 lead over the South Americans.
Throughout the second half, France continued to dominate possession but was slightly less aggressive in its attack, very content with its 3-0 advantage. In perhaps an effort to get extra rest before its game against the United States on Saturday, France coach Phillippe Bergeroo subbed off Eugenie Le Sommer in the 74th minute and brought on forward Marie-Laure Delie. Colombian star Lady Andrade, who had very little influence on the match, was also substituted two minutes later in the 76th minute for midfielder Tatiana Ariza.
In the 82nd minute, France would score its second free kick of the game. Midfielder Amel Majri curled a left-footed shot off the crossbar that bounced down and went over the line to make it 4-0, which would be the final score of the match. With the result of this match, along with the United States defeating New Zealand 2-0 earlier on in the day, France sits atop Group G with three points and a +4 goal differential. The United States is in second place with three points and a +2 goal differential, while New Zealand (-2) and Colombia (-4) are third and last, respectively.
France’s next game comes on Saturday, August 6th at 5pm vs. the United States, while Colombia does battle with New Zealand at 8pm that same night in Belo Horizonte.