- Mbappe became the youngest player in World Cup history to score nine goals before the age of 24.
- With 52 goals, Giroud sets a new record in France.
- Lloris makes his 142nd appearance, tying his career high.
France advanced to the World Cup quarterfinals with a 3-1 victory over Poland on Sunday. Kylian Mbappe was once again in another level, exuding excellence throughout. Olivier Giroud also scored a game-winning goal.
Just before halfway, Giroud became Les Bleus’ all-time leading scorer with 52 goals. Mbappe’s late screamers effectively ruined Poland’s aspirations of progressing, putting the 23-year-old alone atop the scoring sheet with five goals and two assists. Les Bleus will now face either Senegal or England in the quarterfinals.
Poland had a wonderful opportunity to go to the quarterfinals for the first time since 1982 in the first half. The France midfield, on the other hand, did an excellent job of shutting off the feeding line to Robert Lewandowski, who halved the deficit with a twice-converted, last-second penalty.
Hugo Lloris, who has already equaled Lilian Thuram’s 142nd cap for France, demonstrated that experience counts as he produced a wonderful, quick stop to deny Piotr Zielinski.
The coach, Didier Deschamps, had warned that Poland was more than just Lewandowski, and his forecast was justified in the Al Thumama stadium as the French defense crumbled at times.
According to Deschamps, they are a well-organized team, and we had to modify our placement tactics halfway through.
“The players’ outstanding behavior today has been appreciated since we are a cohesive team.” We’re going to spend some time with our families now.”
After Mbappe’s initial attempts failed to create clear chances, France swiftly lost control of the ball and began looking for ways to expose the Polish defense.
Poland’s poise was almost rewarded when Lloris parried Zielinski’s incoming attempt in the 38th minute. When the midfielder’s second effort returned into his path, Theo Hernandez deflected it.
Jakub Kaminski then attempted to score, but Raphael Varane saved his shot just inside the goal line.
“We fought, we made a few chances, some really excellent ones, especially in the first half; it’s a shame nothing went in,” Lewandowski remarked.
He Scored Nine Goals, In The World Cup
France’s tactic, though, proved successful with one minute remaining before the break.
After Mbappe drew the defense to him, Giroud had the inch of space he needed to flick the ball past Szczesny and score his third goal of the competition.
The 36-year-old Giroud, who had been held scoreless in Russia four years before, had tied Thierry Henry for the group lead with 51 goals after scoring twice in France’s 4-1 Group D triumph over Australia.
France, on the other hand, appeared sloppy, particularly Mbappe. Nonetheless, one minute into injury time, the attacker delivered a spine-tingling rising shot that slid just under the bar, followed by another jaw-dropping shot into the top corner.
He scored his fourth and fifth goals in Qatar. Mbappe is the only player to reach that mark before the age of 24. He now has nine World Cup goals, tying Argentina’s 35-year-old Lionel Messi.
It helped Mbappe forget about his missed penalty in the 2017 European Championship, which sent Switzerland to the round of eight after a shootout following a 3-3 tie.
After Dayot Upamecano’s handball, Lewandowski had a chance to score a consolation goal when he took a penalty that Lloris saved before retaking and scoring because the goalie did not put his foot on the line.
While the French players celebrated on the pitch and went to greet the 3,000 nationals in the audience, Szczesny was left cuddling his crying daughter.