France have triumphed at the 2018 World Cup beating off stiff competition from Croatia.
The game was a nail-biter, with both sides keen to gobble up the glory of winning the most prestigious trophy in international football.
Unfortunately for Croatia the French team had more gas in their tanks and managed to pull ahead winning the game comfortably 4-2.
It was a tense game, full of drama and goals, as both sides battled to get their hands on the World Cup trophy. France drew first blood, managing to score on the 22nd minute mark thanks to an own goal from Mario Mandzukic.
Croatia didn’t take it lying down though and managed to equalise just six minutes later when Ivan Perisic smashed the ball past Hugo Lloris with a powerful left-footed strike.
The French were far from beaten though and a late first-half penalty from Antoine Griezmann gave the French side the opportunity they needed to take lead once again.
The second half began with Croatia a goal behind but, despite their best efforts, they were unable to stop Paul Pogba from scoring in the 59th minute.
As the game went on, Marcelo Brozovic managed to intercept a shot from Olivier Giroud, but Kylian Mbappe scored just a few minutes later, taking France three goals up.
Croatia proved they were far from done though and interrupted what could have easily become a victory lap for France, when Mario Mandzukic managed to pull one back, after some poor goalkeeping from Hugo Lloris.
Fans on both sides have been commiserating and celebrating the game’s events:
— ESPN FC (@ESPNFC) July 15, 2018
Smashing game, but the luck has been on France’s side. Own-goal shouldn’t have been a free kick and I don’t think you can call that a deliberate handball when the ball is traveling at that speed off of an opponent. Should be an interesting second half in any case. #WorldCupFinal
— Danny O'Dwyer (@dannyodwyer) July 15, 2018
Croatia has played with heart & energy.
France's first goal originated with a foul that was actually a dive. Their second goal shouldn't have been a penalty kick, especially in a World Cup final.
Croatia can pull this out. #WorldCupFinal
— Arjun Sethi (@arjunsethi81) July 15, 2018
-Pogba screamer (chill…)
-19 year old (teenager) Mbappe goal
-Lloris 5* skill failure……
THIS IS EXACTLY WHAT I WANTED IN THE #WORLDCUPFINAL!!!!!!
You going to love this video…… #FRACRO
— Castro1021 (@Castro1021) July 15, 2018
— Ranveer Singh (@RanveerOfficial) July 15, 2018
Hard lines, Croatia. Didn’t really test Lloris after the second goal. Probably exhausted. But still deserved better.
— Chris Hewitt (@ChrisHewitt) July 15, 2018
Antoine Griezmann's penalty was France's only shot in the first half of the #WorldCupFinal against Croatia.
They lead 2-1. ? pic.twitter.com/arcfxcHu1y
— Squawka Football (@Squawka) July 15, 2018
— FIFA World Cup (@FIFAWorldCup) July 15, 2018
I'm just gonna say it. That penalty was a cheap goals from France side #WorldCupFinal
— U. (@tanjikook) July 15, 2018
The game was also interrupted just as the second half began, when multiple people invaded the pitch. Before play could be disrupted too much they were escorted off by security officials.
Pussy Riot, a Russian punk rock group, have since claimed responsibility for the invasion.
They wrote on Facebook:
NEWS FLASH! Just a few minutes ago four Pussy Riot members performed in the FIFA World Cup final match — policeman enters the game [sic]
Both France and Croatia have had an interesting journey to the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow.
The French side topped their group, despite a weird 0-0 draw with Denmark, and were the first team to reach the 2018 final after defeating Belgium in the semifinals to reach their first final since 2006.
Croatia also topped their group and managed to come from behind in the semi’s to beat England in extra time, guaranteeing them a spot in their first ever World Cup final.
For now, though the World Cup is over so it’s time to take off the St George’s Cross flag you’ve been wearing as a cape, put away your vintage England shirt and stop day drinking.
It’s over. Football is over. Or at least it is until August 1o when the Premier League starts again!
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More of a concept than a journalist, Tom Percival was forged in the bowels of Salford University from which he emerged grasping a Masters in journalism.
Since then his rise has been described by himself as ‘meteoric’ rising to the esteemed rank of Social Editor at UNILAD as well as working at the BBC, Manchester Evening News, and ITV.
He credits his success to three core techniques, name repetition, personality mirroring, and never breaking off a handshake.