By Sedara Oluwadara
France have beaten England 2-1 in a fast-paced game to set up a semi-final World Cup clash with Morocco, who sensationally beat Portugal in the other quarter-final of the day.
Aurelién Tchouameni put France ahead with a blistering long-range shot in the 17th minute at Al Bayt Stadium on Saturday. England fans were left particularly aggrieved after calls for two suspected fouls against Bukayo Saka were dismissed in the seconds before France opened the score.
It was a largely equally matched first half, but England began the second with renewed vigour.
Saka was again brought down shortly after kickoff, but this time it was inside the French box, and the referee pointed to the spot.
Captain Harry Kane blasted the penalty kick into the net past his Tottenham team-mate Hugo Lloris to equalise in the 54th minute.
In the 76th minute, in front of a 68,895-capacity crowd, Olivier Giroud found a huge gap in the English defence and levelled a massive left foot volley, caught safely by Pickford.
But England weren’t off the hook for long, and a minute later, another cross, another chance for Giroud, and France’s leading goalscorer headed home to take the lead.
England won another penalty when Theo Hernandez sent Mason Mount down inside the box, but Kane this time sent his attempt well over the bar.
France will play Morocco in the World Cup semi-final on Wednesday at Al Bayt Stadium.More to follow…