France wins in opposition to England, units up semifinal in opposition to Morocco

Olivier Giroud’s header within the 78th minute broke a tie and despatched France to a 2-1 win over England on Saturday, establishing a World Cup semifinal showdown with Morocco, the primary African nation to achieve the event’s last 4.

France dominated possession within the early going however couldn’t capitalize till Aurelien Tchouameni scored on a right-footed strike from distance within the seventeenth minute.

The purpose got here on the finish of a well-executed counterattack that started with Dayot Upamecano taking the ball from Bukayo Saka deep within the French finish and heading the opposite method. The ball then cycled by means of Kylian Mbappe, Ousmane Dembele and Antoine Griezmann on a six-pass sequence that ended with Tchouameni drilling a shot between the legs of England midfielder Jude Bellingham and into the decrease left nook from about 30 yards.

The purpose was simply the second of 10 scores by a French participant not named Mbappe or Giroud and it ended a 287-minute scoreless streak for English keeper Jordan Pickford. It was additionally the primary purpose England has conceded from exterior the penalty space for the reason that first group-play recreation in 2014 World Cup.

On the opposite finish, goalkeeper Hugo Lloris, taking part in in a national-team-record 143rd recreation, got here up massive twice to maintain France in entrance on the intermission — which was a superb omen since France has by no means misplaced a World Cup recreation it led at halftime, going 24-0-1, whereas England has by no means gained when trailing on the break at 0-6-2.

Neither streak would finish Saturday, though Saka helped erase England’s deficit early within the second half, taking place on the fringe of the field beneath a problem from Tchouameni to arrange a penalty kick, which captain Harry Kane transformed to tie the rating and match Wayne Rooney as England’s main worldwide scorer with 53 targets.

It was the thirteenth free-kick purpose on this World Cup.

England almost took the lead for the primary time within the seventieth minute when Harry Maguire obtained on the top of a Jordan Henderson free kick however he spun his header inches huge of the submit.

Seven minutes later Giroud’s left-footed volley was turned away on a spectacular diving save by Pickford, however Giroud wouldn’t be stopped a second time. Following the ensuing nook kick, Griezmann picked him out within the field and delivered an beautiful left-footed cross that Giroud headed in regardless of Maguire draped throughout his again.

The purpose was Giroud’s fourth of this World Cup, making the 36-year-old simply the second participant that age or older to attain 4 instances in a single event.

Kane, who has scored 4 instances from the spot within the final two World Cups, had an opportunity to tug England even once more after a video overview gave it one other penalty kick within the 82nd minute, however he skied his kick over the crossbar.

England peppered Lloris was eight pictures on purpose and wound up dominating the possession battle however will go residence early simply the identical.