France beat holders England 2-1 to stay top of Euro 2025 qualifying…

NEWCASTLE, England, hebat99 May 31 (Reuters) – Marie-Antoinette Katoto’s second-half goal lifted France to a 2-1 victory away to reigning champions England in their Women’s Euro 2025 qualifying match at St James’ Park on Friday that kept Les Bleues in top spot in the group.

France lead section A3 with nine points after three games, while the Lionesses’ loss was a big blow, dropping them to third below Sweden, who trounced Ireland 3-0 earlier on Friday.

Sweden and England have four points apiece but the Swedes lead on goal difference. The Irish are bottom without a point.

Beth Mead put the hosts ahead on the half-hour when she latched onto Lauren Hemp’s low cross to fire home from close-range.

France raised their game and Elisa de Almeida volleyed home a corner from Kenza Dali in the 41st. Katoto put the visitors ahead after 68 minutes, turning to fire a shot into the far corner past substitute goalkeeper Hannah Hampton.

England lost starting keeper Mary Earps to injury after eight minutes. The two teams meet again on Tuesday in Saint-Etienne. (Reporting by Lori Ewing; Editing by Ken Ferris)