Historic point for Argentina as Japan held

Sports | 12 Jun 2019

Canada found the goal they needed to beat Cameroon 1-0 but Argentina frustrated Japan and collected a first-ever point at the women's football World Cup in France.

Argentina restricted Japan, finalists in the last two World Cups, to three dangerous chances without creating a clear scoring opportunity of their own as the game ended in the first goalless draw of the competition.

The result leaves both teams on one point in Group D, behind England who beat Scotland on Sunday.

When the whistle blew at Parc des Princes stadium in Paris, Argentina's substitutes jumped off the bench to join the players on the pitch celebrate finally getting a World Cup point at the seventh attempt.

"This point is really important for us. I think we're able to reflect upon what Argentina is and what it means as a team," said captain Estefania Banini, who was voted player of the match.

"We weren't good enough to break down Argentina's defense," said Asako Takakura, the Japan coach.

Argentina came out to defend in depth and the approach worked.

In Montpellier, Cameroon, playing their second World Cup, also set out to defend in the Group E opener.

Canada struggled with their shooting and only broke through from a set-piece just before half-time. Defender Kadeisha Buchanan arrived late to meet a corner at the far post and bounced a header past Annette Ngo Ndom in the Cameroon goal.

Sergio Ramos and Alvaro Morata both scored penalties as Spain beat Sweden 3-0 in Madrid, while the Republic of Ireland and Poland continued their strong starts in qualifying for Euro 2020.

Ireland are top of Group D with 10 points from four games after a 2-0 win over minnows Gibraltar.

Poland have maximum points after four games in Group G, with hotshots Krzysztof Piatek and Robert Lewandowski both on target in a 4-0 defeat of Israel in Warsaw.

The Czech Republic joined England on six points at the top of Group A thanks to a 3-0 defeat of Montenegro, although they have now played a game more than Gareth Southgate's side.

AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

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