England, the reigning European champions, beat Haiti narrowly (1-0) in their first match at the Women’s World Cup. A penalty converted by Bayern Munich striker Georgia Stanway (29′) allowed the Lionesses to secure the three points which paved the way to the round of 16. But against Haiti, Sarina Wiegman’s players didn’t offer a performance up to expectations and in the 80th minute Manchester United goalkeeper, Mary Eaps, had to overcome herself to save the result, on a point-blank shot by Roseline Eloissaint. In partial justification, the numerous absences from the team that won the European Championship: captain Leah Williamson, Fran Kirby and Beth Meads are injured, while Ellen White withdrew. England’s next match against Denmark on Friday in Sydney. Haiti will face China in Adelaide.
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