Highlight: France 2 – 0 Ireland (International Friendlies) Download MP4
Olivier Giroud and Nabil Fekir found the net as France beat Republic of Ireland 2-0 in a pre-World Cup friendly.
France kicked off their run of World Cup warm-up fixtures with a show of dominance in a 2-0 victory over Republic of Ireland in Paris on Monday.
Olivier Giroud and Nabil Fekir scored as the hosts eased to a comfortable win in their first match since Didier Deschamps named his 23-man squad for Russia.
Giroud’s 40th-minute opener came after France had completely controlled the early stages, before a mistake by goalkeeper Colin Doyle played a part in Nabil Fekir’s second.
Ireland, meanwhile, never came close to threatening to make a game of it on their first visit to the Stade de France since Thierry Henry’s infamous handball memorably led to their defeat in a qualifying play-off for the 2010 World Cup.
Antoine Griezmann and Paul Pogba were among the players left out of the starting XI by Deschamps, but this is a France side with tremendous depth and they controlled the match from kick-off, with Kylian Mbappe curling an effort just around the right-hand post after only three minutes.
James McClean will have made Deschamps wince with a heavy challenge on Blaise Matuidi on the edge of the box in the 21st minute, but France’s captain for the night escaped unharmed.
Doyle got down well to his left to keep out a Giroud drive after half an hour, before Corentin Tolisso hit the post from distance with the goalkeeper beaten.
The ball had barely left the Irish half, so it was no surprise when Giroud netted the opener five minutes from half-time, prodding the ball home after his header was blocked on the line – a strike that pulls him level with Zinedine Zidane on 31 international goals.
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