Kosovare Asllani has become the first signing for Real Madrid's women's team after a stellar Women's World Cup campaign with Sweden.

Madrid have incorporated CD Tacon into their structure after completing a takeover of the club, announcing the merger last month.

Tacon will keep their name for 2019-20 before being rebranded as Madrid, and their hopes of challenging Atletico Madrid and Barcelona following promotion to the top division have been boosted by the addition of Asllani.

Asllani scored three goals as Sweden reached the semi-finals in France, where they lost 1-0 to Netherlands, her third strike coming in the third place play-off win over England.

The former Paris Saint-Germain and Manchester City forward joins from Linkopings and wrote on Twitter: "Proud to announce that I'll be the first official signing for Real Madrid/CD Tacon.

"Excited to write history, to help build and be part of this team's journey from the very start. It'll be a dream to wear the most beautiful jersey in the world starting next season. HALA MADRID."

The United States have opened up the biggest gap at the top of the women's FIFA rankings in history following their World Cup triumph.

Jill Ellis' side won their second successive title last Sunday with a 2-0 victory over Netherlands in the final in Lyon.

They remain in first place in the international standings but now boast a record gap of 121 points over second-place Germany, who lost to Sweden in the quarter-finals.

Runners-up Netherlands are up five places to third, their best ever position, while bronze medallists Sweden climb three places to sixth.

France stay fourth, with England, beaten by USA in the semi-finals and then Sweden in the third-place play-off match, slip two places to fifth.

The biggest movers are the Philippines (67th place, up seven) and India (57th place, up six), who are rewarded for strong showings in qualifying for next year's Olympic Games.

The list now comprises 158 teams, up from 155, which is also an all-time record.

Sweden clinched third place at the Women's World Cup for the third time after they exposed England's defensive frailties in a 2-1 bronze-medal match victory.

Kosovare Asllani and Sofia Jakobsson scored inside the opening 22 minutes at Allianz Riviera, where the Lionesses failed to recover from a slow start despite Fran Kirby pulling a goal back just after the half-hour.

Ellen White was denied the record of being the first player to score in six consecutive matches in the same tournament when a VAR review deemed she used her arm to control the ball before putting it in the net and Sweden locked the gates thereafter.

Karen Carney, who announced her decision to retire from football before the game, came on as a second-half substitute but there was to be no fairy-tale ending for her or for England.

England were pinned back from the outset and came undone when Alex Greenwood's poor clearance fell to the feet of Asllani, who rattled home a low drive that found the net despite Carly Telford getting a hand to it.

Telford made a good near-post save to deny Jakobsson but was powerless to prevent the Montpellier winger from curling a shot into the far corner after England's defenders allowed her to dribble into the box unchallenged.

Kirby revived a lacklustre Lionesses' performance when she powered into the area and drilled beyond Hedvig Lindahl moments before White had an equaliser disallowed for handball – the Golden Boot-chasing striker thwarted by a VAR review as she was in the semi-final defeat to the United States.

Julia Zigiotti Olme fired a low shot from 20 yards that tested Telford mid-way through a quieter second half that saw Sweden sit deep and defend their lead while England began to tire.

Neville sent on Carney for her 144th and final England appearance 17 minutes from time, while Nilla Fischer's brilliant goal-line clearance prevented Lucy Bronze from taking the game into an additional period.

It was not total football that saw Netherlands advance to a Women's World Cup final against the United States, but a cocktail of grit, determination and staying power.

Sweden head coach Peter Gerhardsson had spoken of his admiration for Dutch football ahead of Wednesday's second semi-final in Lyon.

He became "incredibly fascinated" with their style after witnessing the 1974 World Cup final between the men's teams of West Germany and Netherlands, the latter led by Johan Cruyff and the Total Football philosophy that transformed the sport and was adopted and adapted by many of the future teams that would come.

This was not a Netherlands performance that adhered to such principles, though Gerhardsson should have had grudging respect for the way the Oranje secured a 1-0 win over his Swedish side after extra time.

There were two fine saves in either half of normal time from Sari van Veenendaal – who pushed Nilla Fischer's effort onto a post when Sweden were beginning to take charge at the start of the second period – and countless fine last-ditch interventions and tackles from centre-back Stefanie van der Gragt and left-back Merel van Dongen.

A cynical foul by Sherida Spitse even enraged Gerhardsson on the sidelines in the 85th minute. This was certainly not the 1974 team he fell in love with.

"I haven't seen sound defending all tournament - maybe we need more flashiness but this is the type of defending which will win you tournaments," said BBC pundit and former USA goalkeeper Hope Solo at half-time.

This was one for the pragmatists rather than the purists as Netherlands displayed a steely resolve before finding an extra-time winner with a finish from outside the box by Jackie Groenen.

The Dutch will need to show more of such resilience if they are to stop USA from retaining their title at the same stadium on Sunday.

They certainly have the potential to do so. Vivianne Miedema is her nation's all-time top scorer and struck 22 times in 20 league games for Arsenal last season, while Lieke Martens is on Barcelona's books and Shanice van de Sanden has won back-to-back Champions Leagues with Lyon.

This was not a night for any of that trio. Miedema barely got a sniff, Martens, who had been carrying a toe injury since the last-16 win over Japan, was withdrawn at half-time and Van de Sanden was dropped to the bench after a disappointing tournament.

Instead it was an evening where the defence made their case. Right-back Desiree van Lunteren had eight tackles and as many interceptions, impressing deep into extra time as she dashed back to stop a cross coming in.

An assignment with Megan Rapinoe may be awaiting for Van Lunteren on Sunday, but Euro 2017 champions Netherlands will have belief they can upset the odds having won 12 consecutive matches at major tournaments.

The last of seven European quarter-finalists standing, Netherlands are one win away from securing back-to-back tournament titles having never played in a major competition until a decade ago.

Cruyff and the total football team of 74 came up short in that World Cup final Gerhardsson witnessed and USA will be big favourites to win it all again at the weekend.

But, as Solo herself noted, this type of defending just might win a championship.

Jackie Groenen's brilliant strike in extra time secured European champions Netherlands a place in the Women's World Cup final thanks to a hard-fought 1-0 win over Sweden on Wednesday.

Neither side managed to find a way through in the regulation 90 minutes despite the woodwork being struck twice, but recent Manchester United addition Groenen finally found the mark to set up a final against the United States on Sunday.

The respective defences generally came out on top in the first half, as neither team particularly captured the imagination when on the front foot, providing a stark contrast to Tuesday's semi-final contest between USA and England.

Proceedings opened up more after the break and both sides were denied by the frame of the goal, but it took until extra time for the decisive goal to arrive, with Groenen producing a fine finish to seal a first ever World Cup final for her side.

Sweden looked the brighter of the two sides in the early stages and carved an opening 13 minutes in, Sofia Jakobsson driving forward and feeding Stina Blackstenius to her right, but the eventual shot was blocked and then smothered by Sari van Veenendaal.

A generally cagey first half produced few other highlights, however, with the next clear-cut chance coming just before the hour, when Nilla Fischer saw her controlled effort tipped onto the post by Van Veenendaal.

Hedvig Lindahl was similarly inspirational at the other end soon after, getting a fingertip to Vivianne Miedema's looping header to nudge it onto the crossbar.

It was little surprise to see the game go to extra time, and Netherlands' superior fitness saw them take control before making the breakthrough – Groenen clinically picking out the bottom-left corner from 25 yards in the 99th minute.

Women's World Cup debutants, Jamaica, now know they will have a tough task ahead of them after they were drawn in Group D where Brazil, Italy and Australia await.

Jamaica qualified for its first-ever World Cup when they finished third in the CONCACAF Women’s Championships in October.

The Reggae Girlz will go into the tournament ranked 53rd in the world. While that is an 11-place jump for the Reggae Girlz, they are expected to be the group's underdogs with Australia ranked sixth, Italy ranked 16th, and Brazil ranked 10th.

In other news from the draw, England will meet Scotland, Argentina and Japan in the group stages of the 2019 event in France, while holders the United States will face Thailand, Chile and Sweden.

Having topped a group that featured Wales in qualifying, Phil Neville's Lionesses will face another home nation in the finals in Scotland, who England beat 6-0 in their opening game of Euro 2017, while 2011 Women's World Cup champions Japan are also in their pool.

Holders USA, who beat Japan in the final in Canada three years ago, will start the defence of their title against Thailand in Reims.

Germany, semi-finalists in 2015, have been handed a group that includes China, Spain and South Africa, with hosts France drawn alongside South Korea, Norway and Nigeria.

The tournament begins on June 7 next year in France and Jamaica's opening game will be against Brazil on June 9.

Full draw

Group A: France, South Korea, Norway, Nigeria

Group B: Germany, China, Spain, South Africa

Group C: Australia, Italy, Brazil, Jamaica

Group D: England, Scotland, Argentina, Japan

Group E: Canada, Cameroon, New Zealand, Netherlands

Group F: United States, Thailand, Chile, Sweden

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