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France work hard for win in Luxembourg

Published: Friday 25 March 2011, 23.00CET
Luxembourg 0-2 France
Philippe Mexès and Yoann Gourcuff struck to make it six wins in a row for France and move them four points clear in Group D.
France work hard for win in Luxembourg
Yoann Gourcuff takes the acclaim after scoring France's second ©Getty Images

Match statistics

LuxembourgFrance

Goals scored0
2
Possession (%)0
100
Total attempts1
 
10
Attempts on target1
 
6
Attempts off target0
4
Attempts blocked0
 
0
Attempts against woodwork0
 
0
Corners0
5
Offsides0
10
Yellow cards1
 
0
Red Cards0
 
0
Fouls committed10
 
14
Fouls suffered13
 
9

Standings

Last updated: 13/02/2013 10:53 CET

Legend:

P: Played   
Pts: Points   
 
Published: Friday 25 March 2011, 23.00CET

France work hard for win in Luxembourg

Luxembourg 0-2 France
Philippe Mexès and Yoann Gourcuff struck to make it six wins in a row for France and move them four points clear in Group D.

France opened up a four-point lead in UEFA EURO 2012 qualifying Group D as goals from Philippe Mexès and Yoann Gourcuff earned victory in Luxembourg.

The result was France's fourth straight 2-0 win in the group since their opening 1-0 loss at home to Belarus, and their sixth consecutive victory including the friendly defeats of England and Brazil. Playing just 15km from the French border, the visitors dominated but were made to work for their triumph.

Laurent Blanc fielded an attacking selection spearheaded by Karim Benzema with Franck Ribéry, Yoann Gourcuff, Florent Malouda and captain Samir Nasri offering support. But though they had the bulk of possession, the packed Luxembourg midfield was far from just staying on the back foot.

A set piece was needed for Les Bleus to break the deadlock. Luxembourg captain Eric Hoffmann fouled Malouda near the box, and Nasri's pinpoint free-kick was met by a Mexès header which Jonathan Joubert could only watch fly into his bottom corner. Joubert was in the mix again after 40 minute to parry a powerful Bacary Sagna attempt and he then denied Malouda on the cusp of half-time.

Adil Rami was next to test Joubert 20 minutes into the second period, the goalkeeper blocking a header following Malouda's corner. But with 18 minutes remaining the home custodian was beaten again, Gourcuff volleying in a miscued Hoffmann clearance to add to his goal in the 2-0 home defeat of the same opponents in October.

Three minutes later Benzema came close to a third before Luxembourg rallied to threaten Hugo Lloris's goal in the closing stages. France's lead could be reduced to one point if Belarus win at third-placed Albania on Saturday and, while Luxembourg return to action against another winless side, Romania, on Tuesday, Blanc's men must wait until 3 June for their vital trip to Belarus.

Last updated: 26/03/11 0.16CET

http://www.uefa.com/uefaeuro/season=2012/matches/round=15171/match=2002105/postmatch/report/index.html#france+keep+going

Lineups

Luxembourg

Luxembourg

France

France

1
JoubertJonathan Joubert (GK)
1
LlorisHugo Lloris (GK)
3
BlaiseGuy Blaise
2
SagnaBacary Sagna
4
HoffmannEric Hoffmann (C)
3
EvraPatrice Evra
5
SchnellTom Schnell
4
RamiAdil Rami
7
C. LeweckCharles Leweck
Substitution90
5
MexèsPhilippe Mexès
Goal28
8
BettmerGilles Bettmer
7
RibéryFranck Ribéry
10
PayalBen Payal
8
GourcuffYoann Gourcuff
Goal72
13
JoachimAurélien Joachim
10
BenzemaKarim Benzema
14
LaterzaTom Laterza
Substitution54
11
NasriSamir Nasri (C)
17
MutschMario Mutsch
Yellow Card83
15
MaloudaFlorent Malouda
18
GersonLars Gerson
Substitution71
17
M'VilaYann M'Vila

Substitutes

12
OberweisMarc Oberweis (GK)
16
MandandaSteve Mandanda (GK)
2
MartinoMassimo Martino
Substitution54
12
SakhoMamadou Sakho
9
Daniel Da MotaDaniel Da Mota
Substitution71
13
RéveillèreAnthony Réveillère
11
ColletteDan Collette
14
MénezJérémy Ménez
15
PleinJacques Plein
Substitution90
18
A. DiarraAlou Diarra
19
BukvicAnte Bukvic
20
GameiroKevin Gameiro
20
KettenmeyerMichel Kettenmeyer
21
RémyLoïc Rémy

Coach

Luc Holtz (LUX) Laurent Blanc (FRA)

Referee

Tom Harald Hagen (NOR)

Assistant referees

Dag-Roger Nebben (NOR), Svein Inge Wiken (NOR)

Fourth official

Espen Berntsen (NOR)

Legend:

  • GoalsGoals
  • Own goalOwn goal
  • PenaltiesPenalties
  • Missed PenaltiesMissed Penalties
  • reds_cardRed Cards
  • yellow_cardsYellow cards
  • yellow_red_cardsYellow/red card
  • SubstitutionSubstitution
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