WORLD CUP NEWS HIGHLIGHTS
*France stuttered to a 2-1 win over Australia in their opening Group C World Cup clash as the use of video technology came to the fore for the first time in the tournament.
*Australia fell behind to an Antoine Griezmann penalty, awarded thanks to VAR, before equalising from the spot through Mile Jedinak after Samuel Umtiti handled in a moment of madness.
*Paul Pogba’s shot struck defender Aziz Behich and looped over Matt Ryan to seal three points and spared his side’s blushes.
*France are unbeaten in the 18 games that Antoine Griezmann has scored in (W16 D2 L0).
*At 19 years and 178 days old, Kylian Mbappe is the youngest player to make an appearance at a major tournament for France (World Cup and European Championships).
*Yussuf Poulsen bounced back from conceding a first-half penalty to score the decisive goal in Demark’s 1-0 victory over Peru in their World Cup Group C opener.
*Peru were handed the second spot-kick from a VAR review of the tournament, but Christian Cueva blasted over from 12 yards, and later left the pitch in tears at half-time.
*Yussuf Poulsen, who had given away the penalty, finished off Christian Eriksen’s slide-rule pass at the near post for the only goal of the game, despite long spells of Peru pressure.
*Argentina played a 1-1 draw with debutants Iceland in their first Group D fixture.
*Sergio Aguero’s shot on the turn put his country ahead early on, but within four minutes they were pegged back when Alfred Finnbogason tapped in after a save from Willy Caballero.
*Messi stepped up from the spot when Maximiliano Meza was fouled, but goalkeeper Hannes Halldorsson guessed the right way to keep out his penalty kick.
*Messi has now missed 17 of the 88 penalties he has taken in his career.
*Javier Mascherano has passed Javier Zanetti to become Argentina’s most-capped player, with a 144th appearance taken in during the World Cup 2018 clash with Iceland.
*The Super Eagles of Nigeria on Saturday at the Kaliningrad Stadium lost 2-0 to the Croatia in their first match at the 2018 World Cup in Russia .
*A surprisingly insipid Nigeria performance was punished by Croatia as an own goal and a Luka Modric penalty took the eastern Europeans top of Group D.
*Croatia currently top Group D while Argentina are joint second with Iceland on one point each . Nigeria are last in the group with no point.
*There have now been five penalties taken in the World Cup on a single day (June 16th 2018); the last single day to see more in the competition was June 24th 1998.
*Police in Moscow say at least seven people have been injured after a taxi crashed into pedestrians on a pavement near Red Square.
*The agency that monitors Moscow’s traffic safety said the driver is a citizen of the former Soviet republic of Kyrgyzstan who told police that the crash was not intentional.
*Germany boss Joachim Low said he has no concerns over the fitness of Manuel Neuer or Mesut Ozil in the build-up to the World Cup holders’ opening game with Mexico on Sunday.
*Mohamed Salah was handed a birthday cake by the hotel the Egypt squad stayed in after their 1-0 defeat to Uruguay on Friday.
*Paul Pogba revealed a tribute to his late father on his shin-pads after scoring the winner for France against Australia.
*Harry Kane has vowed that the England team will do their utmost to exorcise the ghosts of past tournaments and finally make the country proud of the national team.
*Brazil coach Tite says star man, Neymar is not 100 per cent fit ahead of their World Cup opener against Switzerland.