Advertisement

World Cup: Late drama as VAR intervenes in France's defeat to Tunisia

There was late drama in France's World Cup match against Tunisia when the reigning champions thought they had clinched an equaliser deep into injury time.

With Les Bleus 1-0 down, Antoine Griezmann looked to have made it 1-1 in the 98th minute, firing a low shot into the back of the net.

The French celebrated, as they believed they had avoided a loss, while Tunisian hearts sank.

But the celebrations were short-lived, as the goal was then disallowed after VAR intervened and advised a pitchside review.

The referee, Matthew Conger, looked at his monitor and announced Griezmann had been offside.

It meant Tunisia secured a famous victory over Didier Deschamps's men.

Ex-Sunderland player Wahbi Khazri's superb goal in the 58th minute ensured his team got their first World Cup win against European opponents after 11 previous attempts.

However, despite the famous triumph they failed to progress to the last 16 of the tournament, after Australia beat Denmark 1-0 in the other Group D game.

Australia joins France in the knockout stages, both finishing on six points, while Tunisia (four points) and Denmark (one point) exit.

France, having won their first two group games, had already qualified for the last 16.

As a result, coach Deschamps rested Griezmann, Kylian Mbappe and most of his regular starters for the match against the North African side.

Only four of the team lining up at the beginning had even started a World Cup match before.

Khazri said he didn't believe France disrespected Tunisia by fielding such a weakened team.

"A lack of respect? No. (Aurelien) Tchouameni plays for Real Madrid and so does (Eduardo) Camavinga," Khazri said.

"It's an honour to play against them. I grew up in a little corner of Corsica that nobody's ever heard of, so it's amazing for me to play at the World Cup."

Khazri's goal, however, prompted Deschamps to bring on Mbappe and Griezmann and the increased urgency almost led to them getting back on level terms.