Korea DPR knew a win would take them through following their 11-0 victory over Gambia, but this was a much tighter affair as both sides were cautious not to gift the opposition an early opportunity.
After 15 minutes the game saw a flurry of action, first with Ri Un Sim – who bagged three against Gambia – testing Romane Bruneau in the French goal after being fed by Kim Hyang Mi. Choe Chung Bok heading wide soon after.
France responded, firing long-distance efforts from the feet of Lea Declercq and Candice Gherbi, but Rim Young Hwa wasn’t overly troubled. The game then fell back into its more sterile pattern after the mid-point of the half.
It was a different game after the break though, both sides kicked up a gear and Declerq fired the first real effort, forcing Rim into a fine save. On 59 minutes, however, the Koreans were ahead, Ri slotting past Bruneau after a fine pass by Kim Phyong Hwa.
Their celebrations couldn’t have been much more short-lived though, France striking back 80 seconds later. It came from Kadidiatou Diani, heading into the far corner from Noemie Carage’s cross.
But neither side could find a winner, largely thanks to Bruneau denying Ri Kyong Hyang in a one-on-one 12 minutes from time.
"Today the north Koreans must be as frustrated as I was after my first match against USA. Today Korea DPR were the dominant side. I want to congratulate my team because they fought hard to keep the score level until the end." Guy Ferrier, Coach of France