FIFA WC: Mbappe’s goal takes France into knockout stages
Moscow [Russia], June 21 (ANI): Kylian Mbappe's close-range goal on Thursday got France through to the knockout rounds of the ongoing 21st edition of the FIFA World Cup at the Ekaterinburg Arena courtesy of their 1-0 win over Peru. After being fortunate in their 2-1 opening match win over Australia, France had their slices of luck again as Peru players did give a tough competition before their expected departure from the tournament. Mbappe's goal in the 34th minute came from close-range after Olivier Giroud's shot took a wicked deflection to beat Peru goalkeeper Pedro Gallese. The 19-year-old also became the youngest player to score for France at a major international tournament. Quite like their narrow encounter with Denmark in the first game, which they lost, Peruhad plenty of chances against France, seeing returning captain Paolo Guerrero firing at goalkeeper Hugo Lloris and Pedro Aquino clipping the post with a super strike from range. However, Peru was unable to find a way through and Ricardo Gareca's side is certain to be knocked out. On his 100th national appearance, Lloris was tested at different intervals, especially the ambitious strike from Yoshimar Yotun. Chances were flowing for France right from the start of the game as Antoine Griezmann, Paul Pogba and Raphael Varane missed a few close chances to score. That's the time when Mbappe gave a moment of joy to his side in the 34th minute. In the second half of the game, Peru started off with an attacking mindset, however, they couldn't find a leveller, thanks to strong backing by Pogba and Kante. With Peru's record scorer Paolo Guerrero wasting a late free-kick, Didier Deschamps' French squad safely held on to secure their place in the knockout stages. France will next face Denmark on June 26, while Peru will face Australia on the same day.