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France into WU19 EURO final after comeback

France 3-1 Switzerland
Clara Mateo scored twice and made another within ten minutes of coming on at half-time to send France into a record eighth final.

Highlights: France v Switzerland
  • France into record eighth WU19 EURO final after quickfire second-half comeback
  • Switzerland take lead just before half-time through Géraldine Reuteler
  • Clara Mateo comes off bench at break to score twice and make another within ten minutes
  • France play Spain in final at 19:00 on Sunday in Senec
  • Highlights on UEFA.com at midnight CET

Clara Mateo scored twice and made another within ten minutes of coming on as a half-time substitute for France to send them into the UEFA European Women's Under-19 Championship final.

France dominated the first half but just before the interval Géraldine Reuteler pounced on a back-pass and rolled the ball past Mylène Chavas to put Switzerland in front. There was a double half-time change for France and within 30 seconds of the interval those substitutes combined to equalise as Perle Morroni centred for Mateo to turn in.

Four minutes later Mateo did superbly to hang on to the ball in the box and cut back for Marie-Antoinette Katoto to rifle in. Katoto then sent Mateo clear to make it 3-1 in a ten-minute spell that decided this semi-final.

  • Talking points

Key player: Clara Mateo (France)
France were not able to make a first-half breakthrough despite their 4-3-3 formation often getting around the Swiss defence. But with Mateo on to support Katoto in a 4-1-4-1 switch after half-time, France found a cutting edge, the substitute taking her goals coolly and showing no little skill before setting up Katoto for the second.

Pace key for France
Even before the interval, Delphine Cascarino's pace was leaving Switzerland struggling. And once France were level, their ability to hit Switzerland swiftly on the break quickly ensured a decisive lead.

Semi-final barrier for Switzerland again
For the third time in as many attempts, Switzerland have fallen at the semi-finals. However, several of this team including Reuteler reached last year's Women's U17 final in Iceland and with more of that squad to come in next season, Switzerland have high hopes of going even further in Northern Ireland in August 2017.

  • Reaction
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Gilles Eyquem, France coach
The two substitutions improved the team and the attacking side of the game. At half-time I told them if they wanted to win, they would have to improve from the first half. We also changed the formation at half-time from 4-3-3 and it paid off. I had rested some players in the first half and it proved a good choice as they made a big impact in the second half.

Clara Mateo, France goalscorer
It is a great pleasure to play in this team and I'm really proud to be part of this qualification for the final – our first as a squad, so it's a great feeling. At half-time the coach told us to keep going, fight more and keep our rhythm. I'm not used to scoring so quickly and I think the girls were surprised the goals came so fast.

 

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