World Cup 2018: 3 Reasons why France beat Argentina 4-3
The knockout phase of the World Cup couldn't have got off to a more high-profile encounter than France vs Argentina. And boy, did it live up to its billing!
France and Argentina battled it out in a World Cup classic as the game went right down to the wire and had the spectators pinned to the edge of their seats.
France took the lead in the first half as Griezmann converted from the spot in the 13th minute. Angel Di Maria restored parity with a peach of a goal from 35 yards out. Mercado scored a rather ridiculous goal in the 48th minute to put Argentina in front.
However, France plugged away subsequently and a sensational strike from youngster Pavard brought things back to level pegging in the 57th minute.
7 minutes later, Kylian Mbappe got the goal that he deserved after a scramble unfolded in the penalty box. Mbappe would then extend France's lead with a fantastic first-time finish to the bottom corner.
As it looked set to finish that way, Lionel Messi found Sergio Aguero inside the box with a perfect early ball and the Manchester City striker nodded it home to keep the game alive till the very last second.
However, the final whistle blew shortly afterwards, confirming France's progress to the quarter-finals and Argentina's unceremonious exit from the World Cup.
Lionel Messi will not have his World Cup dream come true this time around.
#3 France did not flinch after going down
As Mercado scored that goal he'd not want to describe to his grandchildren, France were yet to come together as a group or display their cohesiveness as a group. They were sitting back till then letting Argentina have the lion's share of possession.
However, that's not how things ought to have been going for Les Bleus against this Argentinian side. In fact, falling behind sprang them to life. Kante was tracking back with more fire in his eyes, Matuidi was looking hungry going forward and Pogba was ready to dance past whatever life threw at him.
It was a delightful ball from Blaise Matuidi to Lucas Hernandez that started the move for France's 2nd goal of the night which brought them back to level terms with La Albiceleste. Pavard scored one of the goals of the tournament after giving the ball the best slicing it has had till Phil Jagielka took over the internet a while ago in 2014.
They were committing their resources to the final third and that helped them procure the lead as Kylian Mbappe's freakshow inside the box bore fruit. Shortly afterwards, France scored the goal we'd all been waiting for.
The move started from Hugo Lloris and 3 passes later Giroud teed up Mbappe inside the box and the teenager, brimming with confidence, ran onto it and dispatched it, first time, past Armani.