France score historic video-review penalty, Football News & Top Stories

France striker Antoine Griezmann

Antoine Griezmann leads France's exciting attack

Australia limited goalscoring opportunities during the first half of their Group C opener on Saturday, the score goalless at half-time.

"I hoped that maybe one time there would be a very honest referee, and in that moment, that he wouldn't go to the video screen", the Dutchman said afterwards after being asked his reaction to seeing Cunha rush to the touchline to consult footage of Josh Risdon's foul on Griezmann.

Les Bleus were able to salvage the game with a late victor from Paul Pogba, whose effort clipped Aziz Behich and looped up and over Australia 'keeper Matt Ryan.

Paul Pogba's deflected goal handed France a fortuitous 2-1 victory after Mile Jedinak levelled with a spot-kick, but despite the VAR controversy the Atletico Madrid star was in no doubt the right decision was made in the end.

But Australia's joy was short-lived as Pogba's late slice of luck left the Socceroos with a hard task to get out of Group C in Russian Federation.

Trent Sainsbury was called upon on more than one occasion and the lofty defender showed precision timing on his tackles to comfortably negate Mbappe and Griezmann contesting the ball. "The referee did not bow his whistle, so I moved on with that. I think it's an own goal, but it's the action", Mourinho is quoted by the Metro.

Defender Risdon perhaps had reason to dispute the decision, before Griezmann seized the opportunity, whipping the ball to Ryan's left to claim his 21st global goal.

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France's early promise quickly faded before they were presented with a ideal chance to break the deadlock in questionable circumstances 13 minutes into the second half. It was the first match and it's always very important to get a win.

DF Aziz Behich, 7 - The left-back provided a superb outlet down the flank, even getting far enough forward to take a shot in the first half.

The French did not impress in the final third of the field and their defence often looked shaky.

Incredibly, moments later Samuel Umtiti stuck up a fist to flick on an Australian free kick and gift them a penalty. France were considered to be one of the best bets to win this summer's tournament, having won their qualifying group en-route to Russian Federation while the Socceroos booked their tickets after beating Honduras in an intercontinental play-off game. Fox Sports football reporter Daniel Garb said there were only so many "gallant defeats" we can take before something needs to give.

Giroud and midfielder Blaise Matuidi had a big impact after coming in as substitutes during the second half.

But Australia soon settled and could well have taken the lead, Leckie's flick-on header from an Aaron Mooy free-kick producing a smart save from France goalkeeper Hugo Lloris.

The man sat in France's dugout knows a thing or two about winning a World Cup.

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