World Cup 2014 Video: Benzema brace ensures winning start for France
Video: The Independent's Ian Herbert reports from the Estádio Beira-Rio in Porto Alegre where Didier Deschamps' men overcame a rough-playing Honduras team to win 3-0.
Monday 16 June 2014
France had not won their opening game in a World Cup campaign since 1998 and on the basis of this performance against Honduras, a team so often beset by bickering off the pitch looks set to hark back to better days.
The Independent's Ian Herbert said France's 3-0 victory against Honduras "was not a pretty sight but the French came through with ease, commanding 63 per cent of possession, with 18 shots on goal to their opponents’ four.
"The quality of France’s football suggested England face a challenge even meeting the top European standard across the next three weeks."
England drew 0-0 with Honduras in their last pre-World Cup match before their loss to Italy, and much was made of the rough tackling of the Hondurans against the English. The French manager Didier Deschamps simply said “they have an aggressive team” before the game and indeed, the Honduran captain Wilson Palacios was sent off in the first half after notching up two yellow cards.
The star of the show was Karim Benzema, who increased the level of “Benzemania” which France is awash with by scoring two goals, as well as seeing another shot hit the post and then being spilt over the line by the Honduran goalkeeper, resulting in the first major use of goal-line technology in the World Cup so far.
However, there was still some confusion as to the final decision on France's second goal.
Deschamps criticised Fifa for showing the wrong image when the side’s second goal was subjected to the first video technology used at a World Cup finals, leading the Honduran players to believe it had been chalked off.
Emergency call 'started off dumb, but got pretty serious'
Thought you'd seen it all after the Jeremy Paxman interview?
Greatest mystery about the hit BBC1 show is how it continues to be made at all, writes Grace Dent
"History is violent," says the US Army tank commander Don "Wardaddy" Collier
Animal welfare charities have urged the boy band to cut the scenes
Argentinian scored 'rabona' wonder goal for Tottenham in Europa League – see it here
Latest in Sport
Cristiano Ronaldo applauded by Liverpool fans after master-class for Real Madrid, despite Manchester United ties
Gus Poyet: In other places I would have been sacked straight after 8-0 Southampton defeat, says Sunderland manager
Angel Di Maria injury latest: Argentina international set to play in Manchester United vs Chelsea match
Liverpool vs Real Madrid match report: Cristiano Ronaldo and Karim Benzema run Reds ragged at Anfield
Paul Scholes column: I'm not worried about Manchester United's defence - Chelsea test can be the making of Phil Jones and Marcos Rojo
- 1 This 'woman calls police to order pizza' story isn't going where you're expecting
- 2 Watch what happened when food critics were unknowingly served McDonald's
- 3 Jimmy Carr's controversial Oscar Pistorius joke goes a bit too far at the Q Awards
- 4 Ottawa shootings: Bruce MacKinnon's cartoon is the perfect tribute to soldier Nathan Cirillo
- 5 Of course, teenage girls need role models – but not like beauty vlogger Zoella