LE HAVRE – France captain Amandine Henry said she needed a “little luck” to score the 107th-minute winner which fired the hosts into the women's World Cup quarter-finals on Sunday with a 2-1 victory over Brazil.
The 29-year-old defensive midfielder slid to meet Amel Majri's free-kick early in the second period of extra time and volleyed into the bottom corner to settle a tense last-16 encounter in Le Havre.
“I saw Amel (take the free-kick), I slid, I had a little luck,” she told Canal+.
“After, I didn't know what happened. I didn't even have the strength to get up... I hoped VAR wasn't going to take it back.
“It wasn't easy, we came across a very strong team that played with rhythm and aggression. We were looking to the mind.”
France will next face either reigning champions the United States or Spain in the last eight at what will be a raucous Parc des Princes in Paris on Friday.
“Every time we hear the crowd, it feels good, we want to give back what they give us,” said winger Kadidiatou Diani.
France had laboured in the first half before Valerie Gauvin -- who had earlier seen a goal ruled out by VAR - put them ahead in the 52nd minute, although Thaisa's strike for Brazil 11 minutes later ultimately forced extra time.
“I managed to be in front of goal when I needed to be,” said Gauvin. “The most important thing was the victory. It was difficult, but that's important for the future.”
Agence France-Presse (AFP)