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Women's EURO 2022: France vs Italy match facts, stats, ones to watch

France and two-time runners-up Italy meet for a third time at a UEFA Women's EURO on Matchday 1 in Group D in Rotherham.

France celebrate a Marinette Pichon (No9) goal against Italy at UEFA Women's EURO 2005
France celebrate a Marinette Pichon (No9) goal against Italy at UEFA Women's EURO 2005 AFP via Getty Images

France vs Italy: Head-to-head

  • The sides are meeting at a Women's EURO for the first time since the 2005 edition, also held in England. The pair began their Group B campaign in Preston, France securing a 3-1 victory thanks to first-half goals from Hoda Lattaf (16) and Marinette Pichon (20, 30), a late Sara Di Filippo reply (83) only a consolation for the Azzurre.
  • That made it two French wins from two in EURO finals encounters against Italy having also claimed a 2-0 victory in their final Group B match at the 2001 edition. Pichon (37) and a 74th-minute Françoise Jézéquel penalty ended Italy's hopes of reaching the semi-finals.
  • The last meeting between the nations was a 1-1 friendly draw in Marseille in January 2018. Cristiana Girelli gave the visitors a seventh-minute lead, only for France captain Amandine Henry to equalise ten minutes later.
  • That extended France's unbeaten run in this fixture to seven games (W4 D3).
  • Italy's last win against Les Bleues was a 3-1 friendly success in Rome in October 2000, when current France coach Corinne Diacre was in the visitors' starting line-up.
  • Despite Italy's recent winless run in this fixture, overall they have still recorded 14 victories in this fixture to France's six with six draws.
  • France are in their seventh Women's EURO, all in succession. They have reached the quarter-finals in each of the last three, having exited at the group stage in their first three appearances.
  • Les Bleues lost in the last eight against England in 2017, Jodie Taylor scoring the only goal, having been eliminated on penalties at the same stage against Denmark and the Netherlands in 2013 and 2009 respectively.
  • This is Italy's 12th EURO appearance, a joint record with Norway.
  • Italy's best performance in the competition came when they were runners-up in 1993 and 1997, either side of their only failure to qualify for the tournament in 1995.
  • In 1993, as hosts, they were beaten by Norway in Cesena, Birthe Hegstad hitting the 75th-minute winner. Four years later they lost 2-0 in the decider to Germany, Sandra Minnert and Birgit Prinz scoring in Oslo.
  • Italy have suffered a group stage exit in three of the last five tournaments, reaching the quarter-finals in 2009 and 2013.
  • France topped Group G in qualifying for this competition without conceding a goal in their eight games – scoring 44 themselves. Their only failure to pick up maximum points was a 0-0 draw away to eventual runners-up Austria in October 2020.
  • Italy sealed their spot at EURO 2022 as one of the three best runners-up, securing 25 points from a possible 30 in Group B. The Azzurre's only loss in the campaign – 3-1 at the hands of Group B leaders Denmark in Empoli in October 2020 – was also their first home defeat for over five years.
France vs Italy: Live coverage

Ones to watch: France

France's Marie-Antoinette Katoto
France's Marie-Antoinette KatotoAFP via Getty Images

Marie-Antoinette Katoto

  • The 23-year-old was Les Bleues' top scorer in qualifying with eight goals in as many games.
  • The forward was one of two French players to feature in all eight qualifiers; Charlotte Bilbault was the other.
  • Katoto struck 14 goals in nine appearances for France between November 2020 and November 2021, including a hat-trick in the FIFA Women's World Cup qualifying victory against Greece in September 2021.
  • The Paris Saint-Germain striker finished as the tournament's top scorer on six goals as France lifted the UEFA European Women's Under-19 Championship in 2016.

Pauline Peyraud-Magnin

  • The 30-year-old won the league and cup double in her first season with Serie A side Juventus in 2021/22, the Bianconere also reaching the quarter-finals of the UEFA Women's Champions League.
  • The goalkeeper kept a clean sheet in all six of her EURO 2022 qualifying appearances.
  • Peyraud-Magnin has also recorded shut-outs in six of her eight games in 2023 World Cup qualifying, conceding just three goals.
  • She spent two seasons playing in England with Arsenal between 2018 and 2020, winning the 2018/19 FA Women's Super League in her first campaign.

Wendie Renard

  • The 31-year-old played every minute of France's group stage campaign at EURO 2017 but was suspended for the quarter-final defeat by England.
  • Renard was an ever-present at EURO 2013 for Les Bleues, scoring in the group stage victories against Spain and England, and was named in the UEFA all-star squad for the tournament.
  • The centre-back was her nation's top scorer at the 2019 Women's World Cup with four goals, including two in their group stage opener against South Korea.
  • The Olympique Lyonnais defender won her 15th Division 1 Féminine title in 2021/22, as well as collecting her eighth UEFA Women's Champions League winners' medal.

Ones to watch: Italy

Italy's Barbara Bonansea
Italy's Barbara BonanseaGetty Images

Barbara Bonansea

  • The 31-year-old provided an assist on each of her two starts at EURO 2017 having come on as a substitute in Italy's opening match.
  • The attacker, whose appearances in EURO 2022 qualifying were restricted by injury, struck twice in her four outings in the campaign – including two in a 12-0 home win against Israel in their final Group B match.
  • Bonansea scored twice – including an added-time winner – as Italy came from behind to beat Australia 2-1 in their opening group game at the 2019 Women's World Cup in France.
  • The forward is one of three Italy players to have started all eight of their qualifiers for the 2023 World Cup, along with Sara Gama and Elena Linari.

Sara Gama

  • The 33-year-old spent two seasons in French club football playing for Paris Saint-Germain after joining from Brescia in 2013.
  • The defender captained Italy to victory in the 2008 UEFA European Women's Under-19 Championship in France.
  • Gama is in line to appear at her fourth UEFA Women's EURO having played every minute at the 2009 edition before appearing just once at the 2013 and 2017 tournaments.
  • The centre-back made her Azzurre debut in June 2006, in a 2-1 defeat away to Ukraine in qualifying for the 2007 World Cup.

Cristiana Girelli

  • The 32-year-old scored the seventh-minute opener the last time these sides met, in the 1-1 friendly draw in Marseille in January 2018.
  • The striker was Italy's leading scorer in their qualification campaign for EURO 2022, scoring nine goals in her ten appearances – including a hat-trick away to Bosnia and Herzegovina in September 2020.
  • Girelli also leads the way in Azzurre goalscoring in their 2023 World Cup qualifiers, hitting eight goals in as many games.
  • The Juventus forward's only EURO finals goal was an 85th-minute winner in a 3-2 group victory against Sweden in 2017, eight minutes after coming on as a substitute.
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