Tunisia beat world champions France but don't make it out of the group

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Tunisia beat world champions France but don't make it out of the group
Updated
Khazri's goal was the only one scored
Khazri's goal was the only one scored
AFP
Tunisia beat reigning world champions France in their last Group D match. Wahbi Khazri scored the only goal against Deschamps' heavily rotated side. Despite their win, Tunisia don't make it out of the group as Australia beat Denmark in the other match to accompany France to the knockout stages.

Tunisia were the more active side against heavily rotated Les Bleus, and were awarded by their activity. Their first goal was disallowed, but Wahbi Khazri's strike stood and gave them hope. Griezmann's late equalizer was cancelled by VAR which meant Tunisia leave the tournament with a win.

You can read our full match report.

Second Half

100': Or no! Griezmann's goal is cancelled by VAR! Tunisia go out with a win!

98': Late heartbreak for Tunisia! Griezmann gets the rebound to make it 1-1 and keep France's undefeated streak!

96': Kechrida can't break through France's defensive line.

93': Kylian Mbappe's free kick hits the wall, his cross is tamed by Dahmen after.

90' Eight minutes of stoppage time.

90': Kolo Muani with a shot this time, one of the defenders deflected it for a corner.

89': Brilliant run and shot by Mbappe! Dahmen was ready with a good save though.

85': Adrien Rabiot's shot goes well away.

83': Ali Abdi replaces Slimane for Tunisia.

82': Lot of pressure from France after another corner, Dembele then tries a shot from outside the box - Dahmen catches it easily.

80': Two corners for France, but Tunisia defend them well.

79': One last change for France, Ousmane Dembele in for Guendouzi. His cross missed Kolo Muani but still scared Dahman.

74': On the other side, Ghaylen Chaaleli replaces Ben Romhdane.

73': More changes for France, and more firepower - Antoinne Griezmann replaces Fofana. 

70': A nice run from Tunisia, but comes to nothing in the end.

63': Changes for France - William Saliba makes his World Cup debut replacing Varane. Kylian Mbappe is in for Coman. Adrien Rabiot replaces Veretout.

Elsewhere in Qatar, Australia take the lead against Denmark thanks to Matthew Leckie - as it stands, it's France first, Australia second despite Tunisia's heroics.

60': He did what he needed, so he's off - Khazri replaced by Jebali in Tunisia's attack.

58': Who else! Wahbi Khazri scores and this one will count! Brilliant solo by the most active Tunisian player today.

52': Laidouni pushed Fofana aside and tried a shot. He missed the goal and it perhaps wouldn't have counted anyways - that was a clear foul on Fofana.

46': Second half starts, no changes to the teams. But France will be hoping in a change of quality, they need to step up their game.

First Half

And that's first half done! France surprisingly outplayed by Tunisia, Khazri has been everywhere so far. Eduardo Camavinga is France's best player today arguably, despite playing way out of his usual position as a left back.

45': Two minutes of added time for the first half.

43': Khazri once again active, looking for Skhiri - big chance for Tunisia again.

35': Khazri with a great shot, Mandanda parries it away.

34': Brilliant cross to the back post but Camavinga is the saviour for France, guarding Ghandri.

32': Not one but two corner kicks for Tunisia, neither coming to anything.

30': Mandanda saves a header from Slimane. Nothing too complicated for the experienced goalie.

28': And a first yellow card too - Wajdi Kechrida gets booked for a stomp on Camavinga.

25': First big chance for France but Kingsley Coman misses the goal entirely.

23': For the first time, France calm it down a bit, controlling the ball on the opposition's half. 

17': Varane's mistake nearly costly for France - Tunisia really pushing for a win!

13': Speaking of Khazri being cheeky, he falls to the ground claiming a penalty. Referee Matthew Conger tells him to get up though, and rightfully so.

12': Khazri tries a cheeky shot straight from the corner, but it goes just over.

8': It's a shock goal for Tunisia! But wait... Ghandri's goal won't stand as he was offside after Khazri's cross. Just a warning for France.

5': Corner kick by Ali Maaloul turned away by Varane

3': Wahbi Khazri having some early issues after a challenge from Eduardo Camavinga. He'll continue on - would be a huge loss for Tunisia if he wasn't able to.

1': Tunisia gets us underway! Steve Mandanda immediately has some light work at the beginning.

Pre-Match

15:57 CET: Tunisia are one of the last teams that haven't scored at the World Cup this year. Can they upset the champions, who are playing with a very rotated XI?

15:54 CET: The teams are out for the anthems.

Team News

Didier Deschamps named a heavily rotated side with stars like Mbappe and Griezmann on the bench. Steve Mandanda will be in goal with Raphael Varane taking on the captain's armband from usual starter and captain Hugo Lloris. Tunisia have perhaps their strongest side with Wahbi Khazri on top.

Tunisia: Dahmen; Kechrida, Talbi, Meriah, Ghandri, Maaloul; Skhiri, Laïdouni, Ben Romdhane, Ben Slimane; Khazri

France: Mandanda; Disasi, Konaté, Varane, Camavinga; Fofana, Tchouaméni, Veretout; Coman, Kolo Muani, Guendouzi.

Follow the match details

Introduction

After a promising goalless draw against Denmark in their World Cup opener, Tunisia disappointed fans by losing 1-0 to Australia despite being favourites heading into the game. The Carthage Eagles are one of just a few teams who have failed to find the net after the opening two matchdays of this tournament and now face the daunting reality of needing to beat reigning world champions France, whilst hoping that Australia don’t beat Denmark in Group D’s other fixture, to have a chance to reach the knockout stages for the first time ever.

A draw in that other group game would likely be the best scenario, as a Denmark win would force Tunisia to win by a greater goal margin than the Danes and considering their last victory by a 2+ margin in the World Cup finals goes back to their very first game in the competition (a 3-1 win against Mexico during Argentina 1978) that could prove a step too far. To make matters worse they might have to do it with less support than usual with reports suggesting that many disappointed Tunisian fans have resold their tickets for this upcoming match.Thanks to their 2-1 victory over Denmark on Saturday, after beating Australia 4-1 in their World Cup opener, France became the first nation to book their ticket to the knockout phase of Qatar 2022.

Les Bleus also put an end to a curse that has plagued European reigning world champions for a decade, as since 2002, all European nations that won the previous World Cup have not made it out of the group stage of the following edition, a run started with France themselves in 2002, followed by Italy in 2010, Spain in 2014 and Germany in 2018.

Stay tuned for all the action via our live text updates or follow the match using our audio commentary here.