World Cup: France Win 2018 World Cup, Defeat Resilient Croatia

France have defeated Croatia 4 – 2 in the 2018 World Cup final. Mario Mandzukic scored own goal against run of play to give France early lead Ivan. Perisic equalised just short of the 30 minute mark with excellent strike.

Antoine Griezmann netted controversial penalty to help France retake the lead. Paul Pogba doubled France’s lead before Kylian Mbappe added fourth.

Hugo Lloris howler allowed Mario Mandzukic to pull a goal back. During the match, the Video Assistant Referee system came under intense scrutiny after France were awarded a controversial penalty that allowed them to retake the lead over Croatia.

Referee Nestor Pitana took several minutes in front of the VAR screen after he was asked to check a potential handball from Ivan Perisic. The ball appeared to hit his outstretched hand as it was crossed into the box.

While clearly not deliberate, Pitana decided Perisic’s hand was in an unnatural position and awarded the penalty. Antoine Griezmann scored the resulting spot-kick to put France 2-1 ahead just before half-time.

But there appeared to be few people who agreed with the Argentine official with Joey Barton leading a long list of former players, managers and journalists who think he made the wrong call.

Current Fleetwood Town manager Barton wrote on Twitter: ‘If you think that’s a pen you’re either French or you’ve never played football. Could ruin a great game that. How is Perisic meant to get out of the way of that? Hope that’s not the key moment.

‘No way the player has time to react and think I’m moving my hand towards that to knock it out of play. It happens too quickly and just hits his hand for me. No way a pen!’

Kylian Mbappe becomes first teenager to score in World Cup final since Pele in 1958

Kylian Mbappe became the first teenager to score in a World Cup final since Pele in 1958 when he smashed in France’s fourth goal against Croatia in Russia.

Earlier, Mbappe had become just the third teenager ever to feature in a World Cup final and the first for 36 years, with Giuseppe Bergomi playing for Italy aged 18 in 1982.

But 19-year-old Mbappe stole the show, matching a feat only achieved by the great Pele, when he rifled home from 25 yards in the 65th minute.

Mario Mandzukic is the first player ever to score an own goal at a World Cup final

Mario Mandzukic wrote his name into this history books for all the wrong reasons on Sunday as he became the first player ever to score an own goal in a World Cup final.

The Juventus striker rose to clear Antoine Griezmann’s free-kick but could only divert into his own net to give France an 18th-minute lead at the Luzhniki Stadium.

In the previous 20 World Cup finals, dating back to 1930, no player has ever put through their own net until the Croatian’s unfortunate intervention against France.

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SOURCE :The Nigerian Voice (sport)

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