The 2019 Women's World Cup kicks off on Friday night when France take on South Korea at the Parc des Princes, with the hosts looking to kick off their campaign with a convincing win.
Les Bleues come into the tournament as joint favourites with the United States, meaning the pressure will be on when they come up against a plucky South Korea side in front of a sell-out home crowd.
South Korea will be looking to progress past the group stages for a second consecutive World Cup, having been knocked out of the 2015 tournament at the last 16 stage, ironically by France.
Completing Group A is Norway and Nigeria, who meet 24 hours after France and South Korea. The hosts will be well aware of the threat posed by the Norwegians, and will know that nothing but a win will do on Friday night.
Check out 90min's preview of the World Cup opener below.
Where to Watch
|When Is Kick Off?||Friday 7th June|
|What Time Is Kick Off?||20:00 BST|
|Where Is It Played?||Parc des Princes|
|TV Channel/Live Stream?||BBC One|
France managed to come through their final warm-up fixture, a 2-1 win over China, without picking up any injury concerns, meaning manager Corinne Diacre will have a fully fit squad to choose from.
Much of this French squad featured in the dominant Olympique Lyonnais side who recently won their fourth straight Champions League title. Players such Eugenie Le Sommer and Amandine Henry will be hoping to carry their club form into this international tournament.
Similarly, South Korea used their final warm-up game against Sweden as a means of getting as many of their players up to match fitness. They used a total of 17 players, meaning manager Yoon Deok-yeo has a fully fit and, more importantly, ready to go squad to choose from.
Head to Head Record
These two sides have only come face to face once before, which was at the 2015 World Cup in Canada.
France ran out comfortable 3-0 victors on the day, knocking South Korea out after they had made it past the group stages for the first time in their history.
Any hope the Koreans had of victory were over in a flash, as Les Bleues raced into a two goal lead after just eight minutes. Marie-Laure Delie completed the scoring at the beginning of the second half, and the favourites cruised through to the quarter-finals.
Les Bleues come into this fixture on the back of a red hot run of form, having won six of their seven games in 2019.
The pick of the bunch was their convincing 3-1 friendly win over Japan - a side who are tipped as many people's dark horses for this year's World Cup.
France's only defeat of this calendar year came at the hands of another hotly-tipped team in Germany, when they slippedl to a 1-0 defeat. Despite the result, the French team played well and were unlucky not to get anything out of the game.
South Korea's form on the other hand is little more mixed, as they have won just two of their six matches this year. A last minute defeat to Sweden last time out was not the preparation the Koreans would have hoped for going into this tie, so Yoon Deok-yeo will be looking for a response from his players on Friday.
Here's how two sides have fared in their previous five fixtures:
|France 2-1 China (31/05)||Sweden 1-0 South Korea (31/05)|
|France 3-0 Thailand (25/05)||South Korea 1-1 Iceland (09/04)|
|France 4-0 Denmark (08/04)||South Korea 2-3 Iceland (06/04)|
|France 3-1 Japan (04/04)||South Korea 2-0 New Zealand (06/03)|
|France 6-0 Uruguay (04/03)||Australia 4-1 South Korea (03/03)|
France will undoubtedly be heavy favourites for this tie, with most pundits expecting them to cruise to victory in front of the home supporters.
You can expect South Korea to try to use the home crowd against France, and look to make this a tight, nervy game. They have shown themselves to be difficult to beat in recent fixtures, and that shouldn't change on Friday.
However, the hosts have a wealth of talent that is likely to make the difference later on in the game and should ultimately see them take the three points.