Technology helps France beat Australia

18 June, 2018, 11:43 | Author: Ellis Copeland
  • France striker Antoine Griezmann

Antoine Griezmann scored the first VAR-assisted penalty awarded in the history of the World Cup as title hopefuls France need a late Paul Pogba goal to beat a gutsy Australia side 2-1 on Saturday.

Uruguayan referee Cunha, consulted VAR over tackle and made a decision to award the penalty much to the dismay of the Australian players.

Just four minutes later, however, France's Samuel Umtiti made a freakish mistake, his flailing arm making contact with a high cross from Aaron Mooy, forcing the referee to award another penalty, which Australian captain Mile Jedinak converted. "He caught me on the left foot".

"I think there were a lot of moments they didn't know what to do any more. a lucky goal just before the end. we deserved a draw".

"That's not simulation." Griezmann admitted France had not played well.

"It's not the most important thing", Griezmann said.

The halftime whistle sounded soon after, and while Peruvian fans consoled each other, Peru's players rushed to support Cueva as the teams headed for the dressing rooms.

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"It was a hard match, it was complicated and the Australian team were very good".

Deschamps started with a three-man attack comprising of Ousmane Dembele, Kylian Mbappe and Griezmann with Pogba and Corentin Tolisso operating on either side of N'Golo Kante in the midfield.

The lead did not last long, though, as Australia levelled with a spot-kick of their own four minutes later, and this time there was no doubt about the award. At club and country, Giroud has shown his ability to combine with a secondary striker - Eden Hazard at Chelsea and Griezmann for France - while getting wingers into play.

It was France's custodian Hugo Lloris who was tested most, keeping out a Mooy free kick that French defender Corentin Tolisso nearly deflected into the bottom corner of his own goal. Among the highlights, the youngest player at the tournament, Socceroo Daniel Arzani, made his World Cup debut.

On paper there was only ever one victor but Australia did not let that faze them, producing a stunning collective display to keep Didier Deschamps' men at bay in the first-half after an early attacking flurry. The Atletico Madrid striker had no problems from the spot, leaving Mat Ryan with no chance after slamming the ball into the top corner.

Australia was supposed to be overrun - no match for a French team many pundits expect to win the entire World Cup.

There was no doubting the quality of the approach play to Pogba's goal, though, after he exchanged one-twos with two team mates to carve his way through the middle of the Australia defence. "We must do better".

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