Reported By:| Edited By: DNA Web Team |Source: DNA Web Desk |Updated: Dec 04, 2022, 11:05 PM IST
With a commanding 3-1 win against Poland on Sunday, the reigning champions went one step closer to following in the footsteps of Italy and Brazil by capturing back-to-back World Cup titles.
At the Al Thumama Stadium, it was all France as Poland’s Robert Lewandowski battled to keep up with Didier Deschamp’s side, who dominated at both ends of the game.
France delivered a warning message to the rest of the group in Qatar, reasserting their championship credentials with record-breaking performances from old guard Olivier Giroud and new gun Kylian Mbappe. Not to mention Ousmane Dembele, who put up a strong performance and was instrumental in their attacking efforts throughout the 90 minutes.
A late penalty from Lewandowski provided solace for the Barcelona striker and Poland, who were outplayed by France. Olivier Giroud gave them a 1-0 lead before the halftime, then Kylian Mbappe tripled it in the second half with two magnificent goals.
After stoppage time drama, Robert Lewandowski, who scored his first World Cup goal earlier in the competition, scored a consolation goal from the penalty, but it was all France on the big night.
With his first-half goal, Giroud became France’s all-time leading scorer, surpassing Thierry Henry’s 51 goals. Despite France winning the World Cup, Giroud did not score once in Russia, but the 37-year-old has now scored three times in Qatar, bringing his World Cup record to four.
Mbappe, on the other hand, increased his total to 9, surpassing his 4-goal performance in Russia. The PSG youngster has broken the 58-year-old record of iconic Brazilian striker Pele by becoming the youngest player to score as much as nine goals.
In the quarter-finals, France will face the winner of the fourth Round of 16 encounter between England and Senegal.