World Cup-holder France needed a draw from a scrappy Antoine Griezmann before competing with 10 men to draw 1-1 with Bosnia and Herzegovina as they qualified for the 2022 final in Qatar. Campaign resumed.
Eden Zico gave Bosnia the lead in the first half in Strasbourg on Wednesday, but soon after, his captain Clearance left Griezmann behind and crossed the line just to restore parity.
France were then sent off in the 51st minute by Sevilla defender Jules Conde for a terrific tackle on Arsenal’s Seid Kolasinac.
The disappointing result, after their disappointing last 16 at Euro 2020, still puts France at the top of Group D and automatically qualifies for the next World Cup.
They have eight points from four games, four from second-placed Ukraine, who drew 2-2 in Kazakhstan on Wednesday and who hosted France in Kiev over the weekend.
French coach Didier Deschamps admitted to broadcaster M6: “It’s clearly difficult with 10 people. We had some opportunities but it wasn’t the result we were looking for.”
“Of course we wanted three points, but this qualifying campaign is difficult for everyone.
“We have another point and we will need to find out more in the remaining matches.”
Both Konde’s red card and Griezmann’s goal focused on the late introduction of VAR by UEFA for World Cup qualifiers – it was not in use in the first three rounds of the match in March but is now in full swing. Implemented hastily on the continent.
After reviewing the photos of the Swiss officials, despite the efforts of Bosnian goalkeeper Ibrahim Sehk, Griezmann’s goal was seen to cross the line.
Kwande was initially shown a yellow card for dealing with his negligence on Kolasinac, but was upgraded to red upon review.
MBAPE, Griezmann both started.
It was a frustrating night for France, but perhaps the transfer of two of their most important players did not help them – one that happened and one that didn’t – until Tuesday’s deadline.
Killian Mbabane ended his stay at Paris Saint-Germain, despite the aggression of Real Madrid to bring him to the Bernabeu.
Meanwhile, Griezmann paid a late loan from Barcelona to his old club Atletico Madrid, which was not confirmed until Wednesday morning.
The two began their first tour of France when Mbabane saw Miss go to Switzerland in a shootout at the European Championships in Bucharest.
Coach Didier Deschamps, in particular, made his debut for Roma midfielder Jordan Virat out in a crowded Stade de la Minau in the absence of injured N’Golo Kante.
France, who won 1-0 in Bosnia in March, fell behind in the 36th minute.
Thomas Lamar took possession in his own half and the ball went to Inter Milan striker Desico, the Bosnian captain took a short shot from the edge of the box ahead of Hugo Loris.
France, which had earlier seen Mbappe hit outside the post, did not lag far behind.
Zico picked up a nearby post to clear a corner, only to catch the ball behind Griezmann and return to the goal through the thigh of the Bosnian defender.
Sehk only failed to stop him from crossing the line, but Konde’s challenge changed the course of the second half, with France dropping a man.
Kolasinak also had to come out, and this was probably an opportunity for Bosnia.