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World Cup Glory, France Wins 2nd Star

It’s said that when you win the World Cup you become immortal.  For France, they’ve accomplished just that.  Just one day after their national holiday of Bastille Day none the less.

They’ll add the 2nd star to their jerseys today, but have a target on their back tomorrow.  The last time France won a World Cup their stud Kylian Mbappé wasn’t even alive.  July 12th, 1998 was the last time France won and they did so on home soil with a 3-0 victory over Brazil.

Image result for france world cup final
(Martin Meissner/AP)

France defeated Croatia 4-2 Sunday in Moscow, Russia.  But it wasn’t easy in the early going for France.  Croatia came out more aggressive and dominated possession early.  France got it’s first break when Mario Mandžukić had an own goal in the 18′ after a free kick from Antoine Griezmann following a questionable foul call outside the box.  This was the first own goal in a World Cup final ever.

And in their fourth straight game, Croatia was able to come back from a deficit when Ivan Perišić had a wonderful strike ten minutes later to tie the match.  However; this was the closest Croatia would get to even sniffing the World Cup.

Ten minutes after Perišić scored, Antoine Griezmann scored on a penalty kick following VAR review on a handball in the box.

And after review, it’s pretty clear that it’s a handball in the box.

2-1 France at Halftime

France kept it going in the 2nd half when Paul Pogba scored in the 59′ after he got his own rebounded shot.  This gave France a 3-1 lead and that was all that they would need inevitably.  But why not keep scoring?

Six minutes later, just the second teenager ever to score in a World Cup added a fourth for France.  Kylian Mbappé had an excellent strike from 25 yards with space to give France a commanding 4-1 lead.

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Mario Mandžukić tried to make things interesting scoring off of a boneheaded play by France goalkeeper Hugo Lloris when he tried to play a ball on his own goal line but kicked it right to Mandžukić.

Final: 4-2 France

The rest of the world now have four years to prepare for France when they go to defend their title in Qatar.  However; ironically enough, France will host the 2019 Women’s FIFA World Cup where the United States look to defend their crown after winning in Canada in 2015.

Viva La France!

 

Brian Berard (@RockyBerard)

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