England off to a winning start at women’s World Cup

England have opened their World Cup campaign with a narrow victory over arch-rivals Scotland.

The Lionesses got off to a winning start in front of a crowd of 13,188 at the Allianz Riviera in Nice.

England narrowly beat a spirited Scotland side 2-1, two years after a 6-0 drubbing at the European Championships.

First-half goals from Nikita Parris, who converted a penalty awarded by the Video Assistant Referee, and Ellen White, a scorer the last time the two sides met, put England into a comfortable lead at half-time.

But Claire Emslie ensured Scotland would fight to the wire for a point with a goal from close range 11 minutes before the end.

After the match, England boss Phil Neville said:’ I was pleased with the result. The first game is always the most difficult game but we set certain standards and the players know we need to keep meeting those standards.

‘If we don’t, we get second half performances like we just got. We’ve got to be relentless now.

‘I think at 2-0 in this heat, we thought it was going to be easy in the second half. It’s a lesson that every game in this World Cup is going to be difficult.’

England next face Argentina on Friday in Le Havre before their final group game against Japan the following Wednesday.

Scotland’s next match is against Japan – ranked seventh in the world – on Friday in Rennes.

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