France v. South Africa: Live Report - P.M. News

France v. South Africa: Live Report

France pic

rance defender Patrice Evra warms up prior to the start of his side's final World Cup Group A match against South Africa at Free State Stadium in Mangaung/Bloemfontein. © AFP Gianluigi Guercia

rance defender Patrice Evra warms up prior to the start of his side's final World Cup Group A match against South Africa at Free State Stadium in Mangaung/Bloemfontein. © AFP Gianluigi Guercia

BLOEMFONTEIN, South Africa (AFP) – HOST NATION SOUTH AFRICA ENDED their World Cup journey in Bloemfontein on Tuesday with an all-action 2-1 victory over a thoroughly demoralised France, who had Yoann Gourcouff controversially sent off in the first half.

Bongani Khumalo gave Bafana Bafana the lead after 20 minutes before Gourcouff was sent off for leading with the arm and Katlego Mphela doubled the advantage by the break.

But Florent Malouda’s 70th-minute tap-in ended the home side’s hopes of an eleventh hour qualification.

The result wasn’t quite enough to see Carlos Alberto Parreira’s side scrape into the second round as they ended on four points, like Mexico, but with an inferior goal difference.

An ignominious end to France’s World Cup was compounded by coach Raymond Domenech petulantly refusing to shale opposite number Parreira’s hand after the final whistle.

Uruguay, who beat Mexico 1-0 in the other game to top Group A, are likely to face either Greece, South Korea or Nigeria in the second round, while Javier Aguirre’s Mexico almost certainly a daunting clash with maradona’s Argentina.

Read on to see how the game unfolded at the Free State Stadium.

– 90+3 mins: FULL-TIME – France 1 South Africa 2

-90+2 mins: Tshabalala is free on the left of the area and can make it three… but Lloris makes yet another great save!

-89 mins: France’s ignominious World Cup campaign is about to come to an end — while the rather more inspiring  Bafana Bafana, despite their best efforts, will go with them.

-86 mins: Still Uruguay 1 Mexico 0 — so it looks like the two South American sides will qualify from Group A.

Uruguay will top the group if the scores stay the same in both games and will face either Greece, South Korea or — as an outside bet — Nigeria in the knock-out phase.

Mexico are odds on to face Group B winners Argentina, who only have to draw against Greece this evening to top the table.

-84 mins: France look the most likely here. South Africa have run out of gas — and maybe belief.

-81 mins: Henry blazes pointlesly over from 40 yards — and he’s booed.

France make another change as captain- for-the-day Alou Diarra is substituted — on comes Sidney Govou in his place.

– 78 mins: South Africa make their final change as attacking midfielder Teko Modise replaces Thanduyise Khuboni.

– 75 mins: Mazy run from South Africa substitute Nomvethe down the left flank and he cuts inside to slice between two defenders and into the French box…. but Lloris rushes out to smother it. The French ‘keeper has had a good game.

-71 mins: Diaby fouls the rampant Masilela as he surges towards the right of the box.

– 70 mins: GOAL! France 1 South Africa 2

Bakary Sagna slides Franck Ribery in down the right channel and he shows a good turn of pace to beat sthe onrushing ‘keeper to it and square for the unmarked Florent Malouda who stroke it home from 12 yards. Is that a fatal blow to South Africa’s chances?

– 68 mins: South Africa bring on talismanic striker Siyabonga Nomvete for Bernard Parker.

They really need a third here as Uruguay are still only beating Mexico 1-0.

– 66 mins: Henry controls a ball from over his shoulder on the left of the area and shoots across goal. But it clearly bounced off his hand — good thing he didn’t find the net with that one or it would have been November 09 in Dublin all over again!

– 62 mins: Mphela is in again! He breaks in from the right behind left-back Gael Clichy — Lloris comes out well to block and the ball runs rebounds into the side-netting off the South Africa striker. What does he have to do to score in this half?

– 58 mins: Great save from Lloris as Mphela gets aanother stinging shot on target.

-53 mins: Great effort from Cisse goes just over the bar…. and he is promptly replaced by,  guess who — Thierry Henry.

– 51 mins: Almost 3-0! Tshabalala slips a peach of a ball inside Bakary Sagna on the edge of the area for Mphela who curls an effort against the angle of post and bar. That would have been magnificent!

– 49 mins: Good turn and shot by Bernard Parker on the left of the box but it’s saved easily by Lloris n the France goal.

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– 48 mins: The other alternative outcome from Group A is if South Africa fail to score again but Uruguay put two more past Mexico, Bafana Bafana will be inseperable from Mexico on all of the FIFA tiebreakers and will have to draw lots to see who goes through.

The drama, the drama!

– 1505 GMT: THEY’VE KICKED OFF for the second half in Bloemfontein.

Change for France as Florent Malouda is on for Andre-Pierre Gigncac.

1455 GMT: More from my AFP colleague John Weaver at pitchside:

“There is feverish excitement at the Free State Stadium as belief courses through the veins of the Bafana Bafana fans — but they need more goals.”

45+3 mins: HALF-TIME – France 0 South Africa 2

-45 mins: Three minutes of added time.

-44 mins: And Uruguay have scored against Mexico in Rustenberg! South Africa are really back in the hunt now — one more for South Africa and one more for Uruguay and Bafana Bafana would qualify for the last 16 on goal difference!

– 43 mins: Mphela shoots across the ‘keeper from the right of the area but Lloris just tips it around the post. Ooof — that was close!

– 40 mins: But France still carry a threat with so much experience out on the pitch — a ball is whipped into the South African area and William Gallas gets around the back. He stretches out a toe but can’t get a touch and Josephs tips over — he should have pulled one back there.

37 mins: GOAL! France 0 South Africa 2

Katlego Mphela bundles it in at the far post after good work from Tshabalala on the left of the area.

South Africa’s World Cup dream is alive and a goal in the other game, especially if it goes to Uruguay, could really make things intersting.

– 27 mis: MacBeth Sibaya is receiving treatment and looks quite badly hurt. Gourcuff checked on him before going off-

26 mins: RED CARD! Yoann Gourcuff sent off for an elbow — France down to ten men.

Gourcouff leaps for a header in the South African box but leads with his elbow and catches MacBeth Sibaya flush on the left cheek. There looked to be no malicious intent there but it was dangerous and the referee was probably within his rights ti dismiss the player. It looked  had got the wrong player at first there as Djibril Cisse was looking utterly devastated but wither way the mistake was quickly corrected.

-25 mins: Could have been 2-0! Mphela runs at a back-pedalling French defence which is creaking but shoots wide.

– 20 mins: GOAL! France 0 South Africa 1

The Free State Stadium goes crazy! Tshabalala curls in a corner from the right which French ‘keeper Lloris attempts to punch and misses entirely, allowing Bongani Khumalo to bundle the ball in at the back post off his shoulder.

The Free State Stadium goes crazy! Tshabalala curls in a corner from the right which French ‘keeper Lloris attempts to punch and misses entirely, allowing Bongani Khumalo to bundle the ball in at the back post off his shoulder.

The Free State Stadium goes crazy! Tshabalala curls in a corner from the right which French ‘keeper Lloris attempts to punch and misses entirely, allowing Bongani Khumalo to bundle the ball in at the back post off his shoulder.

-19 mins: Everton’s Steven Pienaar tees it up for Tshabalala at the far post but his wild, acrobatic efforts flies high into the air.

– 17 mins: Abou Diaby’s ball almost releases Djibril Cisse down the right channel but ‘keeper Moneeb Josephs rushes out to clear.

– 12 mins: Penalty shout for France as the ball bounces up and hits defender Bongani Khumalo on the arm — but he had no time to withdraw it and it would have been an extremely harsh award.

It’s been a disappointing showing from the African sides in this World Cup. They’ve managed just one victory between them — Ghana’s1-0 win over Serbia — in the 12 matches they’ve been involved in so far.

– 5 mins: The South African’s 3-0 defeat by Uruguay in their last group game was their first in 13 games under Parreira — so they’re not soft touches.

3 mins: France triker Andre-Pierre Gignac is sent in on the left by Yoann Gourcuff but shoots straight at the ‘keeper.
Poor effort from close range — he didn’t make a good contact.
1401 GMT: THE GAME KICKS OFF IN Bloemfontein.
Six changes for France as Evra is dropped to the bench.
1357 GMT: The teams are out:
France: Hugo Lloris – Bakari Sagna, William Gallas, Gael Clichy, Sebastien Squillaci – Alou Diarra (capt), Abou Diaby, Franck Ribery, Yoann Gourcuff, Andre Pierre Gignac – Djibril Cisse
Coach: Raymond Domenech (FRA)
South Africa: Moneeb Josephs – Tsepo Masilela, Aaron Mokoena (capt), Anele Ngcongca, Bongani Khumalo – MacBeth Sibaya, Thanduyise Khuboni, Siphiwe Tshabalala, Steve Pienaar – Bernard Parker Katlego Mphela
Coach: Carlos Alberto Parreira (BRA)
Referee: Oscar Ruiz (COL)
1355 GMT: A sullen looking French team line up and make a hardly convincing fist of the Marseillaise. Now it’s Nkosi Sikelel’ iAfrika, the South African anthem which rings out.
1350 GMT: A factor which may motivate Mexico, currently second in the group behind Uruguay on goal difference, to go for a win in the other game rather than settling for a draw will be the desire to avoid a clash with likely Group B winners Argentina in the last 16.
This could play into either France or South Africa’s hands if they themselves can managed a victory.
1345 GMT: My AFP colleague John Weaver has been in touch from pitchside at the Free State Stadium:
“The atmosphere is building nicely here with a sea of yellow in the stands.
“Before the warm-up started, France coach Raymond Domenech stood alone in the centre circle soaking it up.”
IT’S CRUNCH TIME AT THE WORLD CUP. Welcome to our live text commentary on the crisis-hit French team’s make-or-break clash with  tournament hosts South Africa at the Free State Stadium in Bloemfontein.
Raymond Domenech’s France have teetered on the brink of self-destruction since their humbling 2-0 defeat to Mexico last Thursday after striker Nicolas Anelka was sent home in disgrace for refusing to apologise for a tirade of abuse against the manager at half-time in that game.
The players refused to train on Sunday in protest at the decision by the French Football Federation, and their fitness trainer resigned in a huff after a training ground row with skipper Patrice Evra which was being filmed at the time.
The turmoil within the French camp can only benefit the spirited Bafana Bafana  for this game, but Carlos Albert Parreira’s team have just one point from their two games so far and are relying on a favour from either Mexico or Uruguay playing in the other game to qualify.
To go through, the hosts would need to beat Les Bleus by several goals and hope either Mexico or Uruguay win the other game well, set to kick-off simultaneously in Rustenberg — goal difference would then come into play.
But even if they are eliminated, South Africa will be desperate to check out from their World Cup with a bang and the French can expect a partisan crowd at the spiritual home of South African football in Bloemfontein.
The big news ahead of kick-off at 1400 GMT is that captain Patrice Evra has been dropped to the bench and replaced as skipper by Alou Diarra.
So can South Africa take advantage of French woes and gain a shock place in the last 16 or will both teams be eliminated by a cosy draw between the two South American teams in the other game? Stay with us for all the action as it happens from what is set to be a high stakes showdown.

BLOEMFONTEIN, South Africa (AFP) – 5 mins: The South African’s 3-0 defeat by Uruguay in their last group game was their first in 13 games under Parreira — so they’re not soft touches.
3 mins: France triker Andre-Pierre Gignac is sent in on the left by Yoann Gourcuff but shoots straight at the ‘keeper.
Poor effort from close range — he didn’t make a good contact.
1401 GMT: THE GAME KICKS OFF IN Bloemfontein.
Six changes for France as Evra is dropped to the bench.
1357 GMT: The teams are out:
France: Hugo Lloris – Bakari Sagna, William Gallas, Gael Clichy, Sebastien Squillaci – Alou Diarra (capt), Abou Diaby, Franck Ribery, Yoann Gourcuff, Andre Pierre Gignac – Djibril Cisse
Coach: Raymond Domenech (FRA)
South Africa: Moneeb Josephs – Tsepo Masilela, Aaron Mokoena (capt), Anele Ngcongca, Bongani Khumalo – MacBeth Sibaya, Thanduyise Khuboni, Siphiwe Tshabalala, Steve Pienaar – Bernard Parker Katlego Mphela
Coach: Carlos Alberto Parreira (BRA)
Referee: Oscar Ruiz (COL)
1355 GMT: A sullen looking French team line up and make a hardly convincing fist of the Marseillaise. Now it’s Nkosi Sikelel’ iAfrika, the South African anthem which rings out.
1350 GMT: A factor which may motivate Mexico, currently second in the group behind Uruguay on goal difference, to go for a win in the other game rather than settling for a draw will be the desire to avoid a clash with likely Group B winners Argentina in the last 16.
This could play into either France or South Africa’s hands if they themselves can managed a victory.
1345 GMT: My AFP colleague John Weaver has been in touch from pitchside at the Free State Stadium:
“The atmosphere is building nicely here with a sea of yellow in the stands.
“Before the warm-up started, France coach Raymond Domenech stood alone in the centre circle soaking it up.”
IT’S CRUNCH TIME AT THE WORLD CUP. Welcome to our live text commentary on the crisis-hit French team’s make-or-break clash with  tournament hosts South Africa at the Free State Stadium in Bloemfontein.
Raymond Domenech’s France have teetered on the brink of self-destruction since their humbling 2-0 defeat to Mexico last Thursday after striker Nicolas Anelka was sent home in disgrace for refusing to apologise for a tirade of abuse against the manager at half-time in that game.
The players refused to train on Sunday in protest at the decision by the French Football Federation, and their fitness trainer resigned in a huff after a training ground row with skipper Patrice Evra which was being filmed at the time.
The turmoil within the French camp can only benefit the spirited Bafana Bafana  for this game, but Carlos Albert Parreira’s team have just one point from their two games so far and are relying on a favour from either Mexico or Uruguay playing in the other game to qualify.
To go through, the hosts would need to beat Les Bleus by several goals and hope either Mexico or Uruguay win the other game well, set to kick-off simultaneously in Rustenberg — goal difference would then come into play.
But even if they are eliminated, South Africa will be desperate to check out from their World Cup with a bang and the French can expect a partisan crowd at the spiritual home of South African football in Bloemfontein.
The big news ahead of kick-off at 1400 GMT is that captain Patrice Evra has been dropped to the bench and replaced as skipper by Alou Diarra.
So can South Africa take advantage of French woes and gain a shock place in the last 16 or will both teams be eliminated by a cosy draw between the two South American teams in the other game? Stay with us for all the action as it happens from what is set to be a high stakes showdown.