FIFA U-20 Women's World Cup 2018
China cling on against Haiti
06 Aug 2018
China PR survived a scare from new girls Haiti, as the Asian side secured a 2-1 win to kick off their FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup France 2018 campaign with three points.
Haiti, taking their first ever steps at the tournament, began in encouraging fashion. It was clear from the off that captain Nerilia Mondesir and Melchie Dumonay were going to be central to their hopes going forward, with the latter looking dangerous from set pieces early on.
However, China found their feet on 13 minutes. Qiwen Xie swung in a tantalising cross from the left, which Yujie Zhao did superbly to redirect back across to nestle in the far corner.
While Haiti could look back on their first-half exploits proudly, their second half begun poorly, conceding inside a minute of the restart. Kun Jin found space to play the ball into the danger area and Mengyu Shen made no mistake to punish a sluggish start after the break.
Even though the debutants were not as bright as in the opening period, China failed to kill off the game, leaving the door ajar going into the final stages. Haiti took advantage, putting Peter Bonde’s side under pressure when a foul in the area by Jiaxing Dou allowed Mondesir to slot home from 12 yards.
It so easily could have been a point for the Caribbean side, too. The captain nearly doubled her tally with moments to go, only for Linlin Wang’s goal-saving header to deny her on the line having evaded Huan Xu.