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Didier Deschamps very satisfied with France
progression to World Cup knockout stage

YEKATERINBURG, Russia (Xinhua) -- France head coach Didier Deschamps on Thursday night said he was very satisfied that his team had progressed to the knockout stage in the World Cup.

A victory against Peru here in Yekaterinburg sent France to top Group C with six points and ensured Les Bleus to seal a position on the list of last 16.

“We are in the knockout stages so we are very satisfied,” the France coach said in the post-match press conference.

Although there were a lot of criticisms on France’s performance in the second half, Deschamps emphasized that what really matters was the victory.

“We have won and we have qualified. We have shown beautiful things in the first half and have not conceded goals. We did what was necessary to obtain the second victory,” he said.

“In the second half, we suffered a little more because we didn’t control the ball enough. We had to defend a lot and we did it with a lot of solidarity,” he added.

Deschamps also praised Kylian Mbappe for his goal in the match, which made the 19-year-old player the youngest French scorer ever in the World Cup.

France will fight against Denmark, who are second in the group after drawing 1-1 with Australia earlier, in the game on June 26 at Moscow’s Luzhniki Stadium.

Regarding the next game, the 49-year-old coach said France will try to win the match and secure the first place in the group.



Mbappe’s goal gives French 1-0 win over Peru in World Cup Group C match

YEKATERINBURG Russia (Xinhua) -- Kylian Mbappe’s first World Cup goal helped France beat Peru 1-0 in a World Cup Group C game at the Yekaterinburg Arena here on Thursday.

With the second consecutive victory in the group stage, France reached the round of 16 while made Peru with two losses lost their hope of progress.

France forward Mbappe broke the deadlock in the 34th minute when he made a right footed shot from very close range. The 19-year-old became the youngest French goalscorer at a World Cup, aged 19 years and 183 days, surpassing David Trezeguet (20 years and 246 days).

Peru captain Paolo Guerrero nearly scored in the 30th minute through a left-footed shot but his effort was saved by France captain Hugo Lloris.

Peru coach Ricardo Gareca made two replacements after the interval and they pushed forward in search of an equalizer in the second half.

Another great chance came in the 50th minute, but the strike from Pedro Aquino hit the woodwork.

During the last 30 minutes of the second half, Peru almost laid siege to the French box and showed more attacking intents but failed to get even.

Gareca praised his team for the attitude after the match. “I have nothing to reproach my team. We tried, we exploited all our possibilities and we were willing to win. The team gave themselves 100 percent,” he told the press.

FIFA statistics showed that Peru made 10 attempts at the goal throughout the match, while France made 12. Ball possession was 56 percent for Peru and 44 percent for France.

France coach Didier Deschamps, said he has a great satisfaction with the result and the goal from Mbappe. He also expressed his respect to Peru, saying “We suffered a lot in the second half. Peru was very good.”

A total of 32,789 spectators attended Thursday’s match at the 35,000-seat Yekaterinburg Arena, among which Peruvian fans outnumbered France supporters by a large margin.

Pedro Gallese, Peru’s goalkeeper, expressed his thanks to the Peruvian fans for their great support in Russia.

“We left everything on the field against two very tough opponents. But this does not end here, we are going to close the World Cup with the same attitude,” he added.

Peru will next fight against Australia and Denmark will be France’s opponent in the final round of the group stage.


France leads Peru 1-0 in World Cup Group C game first half

YEKATERINBURG Russia (Xinhua) -- Kylian Mbappe’s first World Cup goal helped France lead Peru with 1-0 in the first half of their World Cup Group C game at the Yekaterinburg Arena here on Thursday.

Both teams, playing the 4-2-3-1 formation, launched attacks from the very beginning. However, France and Peru haven’t created good chances in the first 10 minutes, as defenders of two teams put up strong defenses.

The first chance for France came in the 14th minute, as Raphael Varane rose to head Antoine Griezmann’s corner from the left towards goal. The French defender got ahead of his man to head towards the far side of the goal, but he placed his effort wide of the post.

In the 30th minutes, Paolo Guerrero’s left footed shot from the center of the box was saved by France captain Hugo Lloris.

After 4 minutes, Kylian Mbappe, France’s youngest ever player in the major tournaments, made a right footed shot from very close range and scored his first goal at the World Cup.

Les Bleus created several chances in the last 10 minutes of the first half but the efforts didn’t pay off in face of the strong defense of the Peru side.

Thursday’s match marks the first clash between France and Peru at World Cup which is crucial for both teams. At least one point is needed for Peru in this match to preserve their hope of surviving the World Cup group stage while a win at Yekaterinburg Arena will put France in a vantage position to progress to the last 16.


Peru coach Ricardo Gareca vows to finish World Cup with victory

YEKATERINBURG Russia (Xinhua) -- Peru coach Ricardo Gareca on Thursday night praised his team for their endeavours during the game against France and assured that Peru will try to finish the tournament with a victory.

Following the losses to Denmark and France in the World Cup group stage, Peru was already eliminated from the list of last 16.

Garecasaid at the post-match press conference that the team “gave their all” and he can’t reproach the boys.

Despite their proactive attacking intents, the Peru players cannot harvest even one goal on the pitch and one point on the board in the World Cup.

The 60-year-old coach said the Peru players were willing to win the last two matches and the team controlled part time of the games, but they failed to make it happen.

Facing Australia as the last opponent on June 26, Gareca vowed to finish the tournament with a victory.

“We also have one match to play and we need to do our best for the fans who travelled all the way here,” said the coach.

This is the first time Peru reached the World Cup finals since 1982.  It’s reported there were more than 30,000 Peruvian fans in Russia to support their national team.

During the matches between Peru and France in Yekaterinburg, there were a total of 32,789 spectators and the Peru fans outnumbered France supporters by a large margin.


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