Thu, Nov 21, 2013 - Page 19 News List

France qualify with stunning reversal

CONTROVERSIAL DECISIONS:France’s Karim Benzema had a legitimate goal disallowed, scored a goal from an offside position and Ukraine had a player dismissed

AFP, PARIS

Ukraine knew an away goal would swing the tie back in their favour, but they barely produced an attempt in the opening half and their hopes were dealt another blow just after the restart as Khacheridi, who had been cautioned late in the first half, was booked again for a challenge on Ribery.

Down to 10 men, Ukraine remained a threat and Roman Bezus just missed the target from long range, but France continued to press in search of a third goal and they got their reward with under 20 minutes remaining.

When a Patrice Evra shot was pushed out by Pyatov, Ribery returned the ball across goal and unfortunate substitute Gusev turned it into his own net under pressure from Sakho.

Pyatov saved from substitute Olivier Giroud’s header as France sought to put the final outcome beyond doubt, but they held on to secure their ticket to Brazil.

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