"It's always important to start with a win," explained Marie-Laure Delie after her excellent double helped France down Russia, who will "learn lessons" according to Elvira Todua.
Article top media content
France's two-goal hero Marie-Laure Delie expressed her happiness after Les Bleues recorded the first victory at UEFA Women's EURO 2013, defeating Group C rivals Russia 3-1.
The forward nonetheless warned that "the opponents are going to get stronger and stronger", while fellow goalscorer Eugénie Le Sommer vowed that she and her team-mates "will get better". In the Russia camp, meanwhile, goalkeeper Elvira Todua explained that her side "fell to pieces" after conceding Delie's first effort and expects lessons to be learned for the challenges ahead.
Marie-Laure Delie, France forward
Overall, we managed this game pretty well. We conceded the last goal, and we don't like that. However, it's the first win of EURO and it's always important to start with a win.
It's hard to say if we were having problems up front [before this match]. We know that, in the finals of a tournament, we have to convert our chances. That's what we did tonight so it's good for the rest of the competition.
We know things are going to get harder; the opponents are going to get stronger and stronger. We'll need to prepare well against Spain first and then we'll see against England. But firstly, we'll try to take three points against Spain.
We know that anything can happen. Every game is important, so if we manage to get six points before meeting England, that would be very important for us – and with as many goals as possible, of course.
I don't know if we were tired [at the end]. The goal we conceded is a mistake that can happen any time, but it cost us. We're in the EURO finals so it's normal that these mistakes cost the team. I don't think we were tired. I think we managed this game well from start to finish. In the end, we conceded a goal but we need to remember the win.
Eugénie Le Sommer, France forward
It's always a good thing to start with a win. We managed to do that tonight and it's true, it's the first win in this tournament. It's a real pleasure [to be named player of the match]. I think I did well at some points and less well at other times. I think I can do even better. I could have made better decisions, for instance.
I think we're going to get better and better as a team. We saw good things tonight but we also saw mistakes. We can get better – we will get better. It's a pity [to have allowed Russia to score]; we finished on a bit of a low. It's a real pity to concede a goal when you're leading 3-0, especially when you know that tournaments can be decided on goal difference. It's a pity, but we can use it to go forward.
Nelli Korovkina, Russia forward
Our opponents were pretty strong. We probably needed more fighting spirit, and maybe we could have played with more dedication. We lost, but France are a really decent team. However, we cannot allow ourselves to lose heart. We have to continue working and if we're lucky, we can meet them again and put in a better performance.
Elvira Todua, Russia goalkeeper
The player who surprised us today or, shall we say, made her team happy and ours unhappy was Marie-Laure Delie. Well done to her – she scored two great goals. However, we didn't have our best game; we expected another result. We fell to pieces a bit after the first goal and it was obviously hard to rally as we were playing against the favourites. The overall impression is mixed as we can play better. I think we can learn lessons from this and play in another way.