The 2022 World Cup is up and running. We are treated to a feast of four games today and you can follow all the action with us live here.
Fantastic France on fire
Scorers: Rabiot 27′, Giroud 32′ 71′, Mbappé 68′; Goodwin 9′
France showed their class against Australia as two goals from Olivier Giroud and one apiece for Adrian Rabiot and Kylian Mbappé saw them win 4-1.
Injury-plagued France were opening their World Cup campaign against an Australia side whose back four consisted of three players currently plying their trade in the SPL.
It looked like a mismatch on paper but it was the Socceroos who took the lead after nine minutes as Craig Goodwin found space at the back post and fired passed Hugo Lloris.
Les Bleus made their quality pay midway through the half however as Rabiot latched on to a cross and headed in from close range.
The turnaround was complete not long after as Giroud tapped in to give France the lead.
Didier Deschamps’ side would go close to adding a third late on but Mbappé’s strike went agonisingly close over the bar.
Into the second half and Giroud almost scored one of the great World Cup goals but his overhead kick went just wide of the post.
France were in almost complete control now and got their third on 68 minutes as Mbappé got in front of his man and headed home.
Giroud then bagged his second of the evening as the Milan forward bravely got on the end of an Mbappé cross and placed his header into the far corner.
Mexico held to goalless draw with Poland
Mexico needed the heroics of goalkeeper Guillermo Ochoa to secure a goalless draw in their opening match against Poland as Robert Lewandowski’s wait for a World Cup goal continues following his missed penalty.
Chivas forward Alexis Vega came within inches of opening the score for El Tri at the midway point of the first half. Rising high at the back post Vega beat Matty Cash in the air but the 24-year-old’s header looped wide of Wojciech Szczęsny’s goal.
Mexico sought to turn the screw at the start of the second period as Hirving Lozano tested Szczęsny from range but, as Poland pressed higher up the field, a turnover in the Mexican half almost changed the tide.
Robert Lewandowski was brought down in the penalty area and, after a VAR consultation, was awarded a spot-kick. The Barcelona forward stepped up and placed a powerful shot low to Guillermo Ochoa’s left-hand side however, the keeper who is known for his World Cup exploits, guessed correctly to keep the score level.
In a scrappy and hard-fought encounter, clear-cut chances were few and far between as Szczęsny was required to react quickly as Edson Álvarez’s hipped delivery was flicked goalwards by Henry Martín.
Tunisia frustrate Denmark
Tunisia battled hard to earn a well-deserved point against Denmark, despite a credible late shout for a penalty.
Jalel Kadri’s side started aggressively, with Denmark on the back foot from the outset.
There was soon a hairy moment for Denmark goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel, who was left flat-footed after Mohamed Dräger’s shot took a wicked deflection off Andreas Christensen and went just wide.
After nothing had come from a superb delivery into the box from a Christian Eriksen free-kick, Issam Jebali had the ball in the back of the net for Tunisia, but the attempt was ruled out for a clear offside.
Just before the break, Schmeichel was called into action again, spreading himself wide to save an almost certain goal from Jebali.
Denmark had their turn for a disallowed goal, when a well-executed finish from Andreas Skov Olsen was ruled out by the assistant referee.
As they tried to grab more of a foothold into the game, Eriksen forced a superb top-handed save from Aymen Dahmen, and Andreas Cornelius somehow missed a gilt-edged chance on the line from the resulting corner.
Denmark had chances late on, and Tunisia had a late reprieve when the referee went to the screen to check for a handball, but opted against giving the penalty.
Saudi Arabia stun Argentina
Scorers: Messi (PEN) 10′; Al-Shehri 48′, Al-Dawsari 54′.
Saudi Arabia came from behind to inflict a stunning defeat on Argentina in one of the biggest shocks in the tournament’s history.
It was all going so well for Argentina when they took the lead after just 10 minutes with Lionel Messi netting from the penalty spot after Leandro Paredes had been pulled to the floor in the box.
That goal meant Messi became the first Argentinian player to score at four different World Cups.
It looked as if it was going to be a comfortable victory for Lionel Scaloni’s side from that point with Argentina continually getting in behind their opponent’s back line, seeing Messi have another goal ruled out for offside before Lautaro Martínez had VAR intervene to chalk off his effort.
But two goals in six minutes at the start of the second half changed the whole complexion of this game.
First, Saleh Al-Shehri burst into the box to drill a left-footed effort into the bottom corner before Salem Al-Dawsari left the Argentines stunned with a powerful curler from the edge of the box which rifled into the top corner to give his side the lead.
Argentina pushed in search of an equaliser and Saudi goalkeeper Mohammed Alowais had to be alert to palm out an attempt via Nicolas Tagliafico’s knee from just four yards out.
Julian Alvárez then had a shot cleared off the line with Alowais on the floor and the goal gaping in a frantic end to the game in stoppage time.
That was about as close as they got as a resilient Saudi Arabia side held on to inflict a first defeat on Argentina since March 2019, bringing to an end a run of 36 games without defeat.