Football

Final result of France vs. Australia: Kylian Mbappe and Olivier Giroud lead reigning World Cup champions’ comeback

FIFA World Cup Reigning champions France made a winning start to their campaign at Al Wakrah with a 4-1 thrashing of Australia to move top of Group D. Olivier Giroud scored twice and Adrien Rabiot and Kylian Mbappe also netted after they Craig Goodwin gave the Socceroos an unexpected early lead. .

Matthew Leckie put Goodwin past inside 10 minutes to finish high into the net, but Rabiot equalized with a header after Theo Hernandez’s ball after coming on for his injured brother Lucas. Rabiot then turned provider to give Giroud his 50th goal for French colours, and it was 2–1 at half-time.

Mbappe headed in from Ousmane Dembele’s cross to make it 3-1 midway through the second half and then provided Giroud’s second of the night just three minutes later. The AC Milan man now joins Thierry Henry as Les Bleus’ top scorer with 51 goals after a memorable night at Al Janoub Stadium.

Here are some takeaways:

Mbappé out of place

Back for a second bite at the World Cup after his 2018 success with France in Russia, the Paris Saint-Germain man has started ideally with a goal. Mbappe headed in from Ousmane Dembele’s cross and then attacked Giroud as the 23-year-old quickly found his place in Qatar. With Denmark and Tunisia in Group D, he will be closely watched after this performance.

giroud the great

Two goals for the AC Milan man who is now tied with Thierry Henry as France’s top scorer with 51 goals. One was the easiest shot after an assist from Rabiot and the other was a much more impressive header after a ball inside from Mbappé. Another page in history with Les Bleus for Giroud and signs that Deschamps’ attacking set-up may still pay off.

Rejuvenated Rabiot

Key in the turnaround of France after going behind was the man from Juventus. Rabiot headed in Theo Hernandez’s ball to equalize and then provided Giroud with an easy finish, but his all-round performance and maturity was arguably the most impressive aspect of his display. Now 27, he is the most experienced midfielder available to Deschamps and he put Aurelien Tchouameni in the shadows with a commanding display. Any more of that and Paul Pogba and N’Golo Kante might not have a way back to the starting XI when fit.

France weak behind

Questions about France’s defense were asked before the World Cup began and were answered within 10 minutes as Australia took an early lead. Although Deschamps’s men responded through Rabiot and Giroud, the back line did not settle as expected and the Socceroos had a few more chances. Jackson Irvine’s header touched the post, which was a reminder of Les Bleus’ defensive vulnerabilities, which were not improved by the early departure of Lucas Hernández through injury. We may only be one game down, but the French won’t defend their title if they don’t improve their rearguard.

Someone’s group?

France looks as dominant as many expected and could make life difficult for Denmark in the next matchday. Australia and Tunisia meet in what could decide a surprise challenger for group progression. Les Bleus have the advantage, but a lot will play now in that clash with the Danes. A draw there could keep things reasonably open going into the final games.

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