England beat rivals Scotland in opener

Phil Neville

Meanwhile, Scotland coach Shelley Kerr took comfort from the way her team fought back in the second half in their first ever World Cup finals game. After that opening period, England quickly figured out how to take advantage of the spaces Scotland vacated, creating overloads and setting up 1v1's at will.

With 20 minutes to go, England almost found a third.

But England's dominance did Scotland a favour. They'll be defensive and compact and will try and catch them on the counter.

"At a competition like the World Cup you need to scrutinise (yourselves) to the max; there were a lot of positives for us in the second half though".

Kirby was involved in the build-up to both England goals, providing the assist when Ellen White doubled the lead in the 40th minute.

Scotland fell to a 2-1 defeat in Nice in a game which attracted controversy with the use of VAR.

Beckie - on her 57 appearance for her country - claimed an assist on her tournament debut, floating a corner to the backpost for Kadeisha Buchanan to head home on the brink of half-time to clinch the three points and the ideal start for the 2015 hosts and quarter-finalists.

England were able to hang on though, as they ran out 2-1 winners in a match that was closer than many had expected. Millie Bright was replaced by Abbie McManus due to injury.

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But Scotland hung around and capitalized on a counter in the 79th minute.

Canada's other Group E challengers New Zealand and the Netherlands face each other at 2pm today with some familiar faces set to feature for the Football Ferns in former City players Betsy Hassett and Emma Kete.

Scotland played a ball up the left flank at the start of her nutmeg sequence. The Chelsea midfielder drove at the retreating defence and played in Mead.

Scotland were soon pinned to the realm of their penalty area and looked to play on the counter attack.

CB - Steph Houghton (c) - Captaining England at a third major tournament since 2015, Houghton's experience, quality and leadership will be crucial in calming any nerves.

If anything, that should be their plan. Scottish women team will be playing their first World Cup tournament, therefore not much is expected from them. They opened against England, one of the favourites.

"She has got to keep scoring goals, she has got to keep improving".

"The likes of Kim Little, Jennifer Beattie and Erin Cuthbert coming through the ranks they are going to be the players we have to stop, and we will have to make sure their rhythm doesn't get anywhere near what they are used to". "We have natural ability in our team and it was eventually going to come through at some point".



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