England vs. France: Live Stream Info for 2013 UEFA Women's Euro Match

Matt CheethamCorrespondent IJuly 17, 2013

LINKOPING, SWEDEN - JULY 15: (L-R) Ellen White and Stephanie Houghton of England look thoughtful after the UEFA Women's EURO 2013 Group C match between England and Russia at Linkoping Arena on July 15, 2013 in Linkoping, Sweden. (Photo by Christof Koepsel/Getty Images)
Christof Koepsel/Getty Images

England and France contest their final group fixture of the 2013 UEFA Women's European Championships on Thursday, hoping to progress through to the tournament's quarterfinal stage.

The tournament format of three groups of four, with eight teams making it through to the knockout stage, means both sides still have qualification within their grasp.

Here's a preview for Thursday's final Group C clash. 

 

When: Thursday, July 18, 2:30 p.m. ET

Where: Arena Linkoping, Sweden

Live Stream: ESPN3

 

Form

France are currently second favourites with Skybet to lift the trophy, behind Germany, and have begun the tournament in commanding fashion.

They dispatched Russia 3-1 in their first match and secured another three points thanks to a 1-0 win over Spain.

In contrast, England have struggled so far, falling to a surprise 3-2 defeat at the hands of Spain and only managing a 1-1 draw with Russia.

Ranked seventh in the world and fourth-highest among European teams, it can only be described as a poor tournament so far with no wins against two sides ranked below them.

To qualify, Hope Powell's side will almost certainly need a victory, which is a tough ask against a talented French side who she's yet to beat during her 15-year spell as English head coach.

 

Key Players

Marie-Laure Delie will prove a constant nuisance to an English defence that's appeared especially fallible thus far this tournament.

The French striker has already registered twice in this championship and boasts a formidable record at international level with 47 goals in 61 games. If England can suppress her attacking input, they will have a far greater chance of securing the win they need.

Injury has restricted Kelly Smith to an 11-minute cameo appearance against Russia so far, but even during that short time the English veteran sparked her side into life and played a big part in their late equaliser.

She is unlikely to start against France, but if the Arsenal forward can be nursed back to make an impact in the second half, she's so pivotal to her country that she could prove the difference.

 

Prediction

England will throw everything at France in order to qualify but may struggle to gain an advantage. The fact Les Bleus are already through may reduce their intensity, slightly, but probably not enough for the English to grab the win they need.

The surrounding elements for this tie could well lead to an entertaining spectacle but, at the moment, France seem too tough an outfit for England to beat.

A draw may be the best they can hope for, which is unlikely to seal a route to the quarterfinals.

France 2-2 England