Coverage of Group C matches during the 2018
World Cup Finals in Russia between
Host Cities - Visit Russia.
Group C Games
Saturday, 16th June
in Kazan (2:1)
The Socceroos started to believe in themselves once
the first fifteen minutes passed without a serious threat from les
Hugo Lloris even had to save the French some
embarrassment from a possible own goal; at the back end of a floating
After the Iberian delight of the night before in
Sochi, football suffered something of a hangover here in Kazan; as the
wannabees and nearly rans didn't really break into a first-half sweat.
Half-time: France 0 - Australia 0
Ten minutes after the start of the second
half, France were awarded a penalty after a VAR review; although it
seemed Joshua Risdon did get a foot to the ball before catching
Australia were awarded a penalty just five
minutes later, after Samuel Umtiti raised his hand to the ball. Mike
Jedinak equalled the score comfortably.
Goaline technology confirmed that Paul
Pogba's deflected chip off the underside of
the bar did cross the line and give France
the edge, with nine minutes to go; although
the goal would later be given as an Aziz
Behich own goal.
Australia may have deserved a draw, but we don't
always get what we deserve; especially when the cream eventually rises
to the top.
They huffed and they puffed but they couldn't blow the house down.
Both teams started with plenty of end to end bravado but failed to
complete on the plan and the first-half headed towards a snore draw;
until VAR came into play, a minute before the break.
On review, a penalty was awarded to Peru after Christian Cueva performed
a beautiful stud roll on the ball to lose Yussuf Poulsen and was
subsequently hooked down by the Dane's trailing leg.
Cueva stuttered on his run up, to try and commit Kasper Schmeichel, but
hoofed the penalty kick high over the bar; the second penalty miss of
the day, after Messi saw his spot kick saved by Iceland's Hannes Thor
Halldorsson in Moscow.
Peru 0 -
The second-half started much like the first, with Cueva trying to
impress a little more, after his miserable penalty miss.
But it was a Christian Eriksen inspired
break down the middle that allowed Yussuf Poulsen to add the finishing
touch; curling the ball around Pedro Gallese on the left.
Kasper Schmeichel was immediately called into action at the other end,
as Cueva laid the table for Flores.
Poulsen too putting in a shift on the Danish goal line a little later to
keep the Peruvian threat at bay.
Peru continued to attack through Cueva and really deserved to level the
score; Paolo Guerrero even trying a sneaky back-heel to try and get the
ball past Kasper Schmeichel.
Then Schmeichel blocked out Jefferson Farfan, as Peru continued to
search for an equaliser right up to the final whistle.
Thursday, 21st June
in Samara (1:1)
Christian Eriksen opened the scoring for
Denmark in the seventh minute, finishing off a swift Danish counter
Australia were back in the game, half an
hour later, after VAR judged Yussuf Poulsen to have handled the ball in
the penalty area. Mike Jedinak scored his second spot kick of the
Denmark 1 -
And that's the way it stayed.
Hugo Lloris makes his
100th international appearance in goal for
France and Olivier Giroud starts up top.
The Peruvian fans made
plenty of noise to encourage their team
On the half-hour, Lloris
made a save with his legs from Paolo
Guerrero, the Peruvian captain.
A few minutes later, France were ahead; a
Kylian Mbappe tap in from Olivier Giroud's
chip over Pedro Gallese, from the left side
of the box.
France seemed a little
more confident; and Peru deflated.
France 1 -
Peru tried to get back
on level terms but France just did enough to
hold the game. Hopefully the French will
excite us a little more in the knockout
Tuesday, 26th June
Australia needed to win and hope Denmark lost. Peru were out, but gave
their fans something to shout about; with two goals in the first fifty
No comeback for Australia.
in Moscow Luzhniki
France were already
through to the Second Round and rested a few
key players; including Hugo Lloris and Paul
Denmark 0 -
Sad to see a final group game showing such a lack of
desire. Football fans at the World Cup Finals deserve more.
The only game to end in a scoreless draw so far.
Saturday, 30th June
France vs Argentina
Willy Caballero has lost confidence as the
Argentina number 1, so in comes Franco
Armani; the number 12. Sounds like Italian
tailoring, but let's see.
France were awarded a penalty in the
eleventh minute, after Marcos Rojo stopped
Kylian Mbappe's awesome run towards Armani
in the Argentina goal. Antoine Griezmann
sent Armani the wrong way and cooly
side-footed the ball down the middle.
Mbappe's pace was too much for Argentina
again, less than ten minutes later. This
time Paul Pogba skied the free-kich from the
edge of the area.
Angel di Maria levelled for Argentina just
before half-time; firing a left-footer from
the edge of the area, past Hugo Lloris.
Half-time: France 1 - Argentina 1
Marcos Rojo, on a yellow card, is replaced
by Federico Fazio at the start of the
A few minutes in and Argentina were in
front; Messi's shot deflected in by defender
Fazio made a lazy back-pass and almost let
Griezmann through on goal. The little pull
on the Frenchman not noticed.
Benjamin Pavard's first goal for France
couldn't have come at a better time; the
Tottenham target cut at the ball, from a
left-wing cross, without even thinking about
a touch to control the flight.
Not even born when
France won the World Cup on home soil in
1998, Kylian Mbappe scored two goals
within five minutes to give France a
Sergio Aguero came off the bench to give
Argentina one last hope in stoppage time.
Sunday, 1st July
Kasper Schmeichel saved three penalties but it
wasn't enough to keep Denmark in the tournament.
Friday, 6th July
in Nizhny Novgorod (16.00)
A positive start from two very good sides. Uruguay perhaps looked more
of a threat, with two shots on target, in the first thirty-five minutes.
France earned a free-kick on the right, in
the fortieth minute and with it their first real chance to test Nestor
Muslera. Antoine Griezmann's floated ball between the defenders was met
by a glancing header from Raphael Varane.
Uruguay looked to reply before the break; but a one-handed save by Hugo
Lloris, from Martin Caceres' header, kept them out.
Half-time: Uruguay 0 - France 1
What a day to make a goalkeeping error;
Nestor Muslera palming Antoine Griezmann's left-foot strike high into
his own net.
Kylian Mbappe and Cristian Rodriguez were booked, with twenty minutes to
go, as nerves started to be tested to the limit.
In the end, France did enough to earn a place in the semi-finals without
really going therough the gears.
Tuesday, 10th July
No goals, but an interesting first-half with flashes
of brilliance from Eden Hazard and Kevin de Bruyne. Raphael Varane and
Hugo Lloris were defensively equal.
Belgium probably had the better of the first half an
hour, then France tried to move it around more offensively through the
influence of Antoine Griezmann and Olivier Giroud. Kylian Mbappe
presented the former Gunner with another chance to shoot; and he failed
Not be outdone by Hugo Lloris, Thibaut Courtois
stuck out a foot to make a crucial save for Belgium from Benjamin
Romelu Lukaku wasn't really in the game, until just
before the break; which showed how well France were holding their shape.
Half-time: France 0 - Belgium 0
In the 51st minute, President Macron of
France shook hands with the King of Belgium after Sauel Umtiti rose
above Marouane Fellaini to head in Antoine Griezmann's corner.
Roberto Martinez brought on Dries Merts for Moussa
Dembele in the 60th minute; Didier Deschamps still sitting pretty.
Paul Pogba dropped back to keep an eye on Marouane
Fellaini; even Olivier Giroud was deep in the France half to clear a
Belgium threat. France were under pressure with twenty minutes to go.
Eden Hazard was denied an edge of the box free-kick
with ten minutes still to play. Then Marouane Fellaini was taken off and
Hugo Lloris made a diving punch to keep out Axel Witsel.
Tension started to show on the red, yellow and black
painted faces of the Belium fans.
Blaise Matuidi had a great game for France but took
a challenge too far and, shell-shocked, had to be replaced with just a
few minutes left to play.
France held out to make it to their third World Cup
Sunday, 15th July:
2018 World Cup Final
France vs Croatia
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