France and Switzerland met at the Stade Saint-Smyphorien in Metz in an international friendly last night without their English-based stars.
Arsenal trio Lia Walti, Noelle Maritz and Malin Gut and Everton pair Alisha Lehmann and Valerie Gauvin were all initially brought into consideration to feature for their respective countries this month but they were unable to play due to the current COVID-19 travel restrictions in France.
In the cases of Swiss quartet Walti, Maritz, Gut and Lehmann, the players were able to link up with their national team and train in camps held in Kloten and Schwamendingen in the lead up to last night’s match but ultimately, they were unable to travel with the squad to France. Everton forward Gauvin was unable to report for any of the planned 11 days activity with the French national team.
France went on to defeat Switzerland 2-0 thanks to goals from defenders Wendie Renard and Perle Morroni. The pair will meet again on Tuesday evening in a second international friendly fixture at the same venue. All five Barclays FA Women’s Super League stars will again be missing for their respective nations.
This month was set to see France and Switzerland compete alongside Norway and Iceland in the Tournoi de France but the tournament was cancelled due to the withdrawals of the latter two sides due to health concerns. The decision was therefore made for France and Switzerland to still meet in two international friendly matches.