[Photo: FIFA World Cup / Twitter]
Olivier Giroud became France’s joint all-time top scorer when his double helped the holders start the defence of their World Cup title in style with a 4-1 comeback Group D win against Australia.
Giroud found the net before and after the break to take his tally to 51 goals, matching Thierry Henry’s mark, either side of a Kylian Mbappe goal after Adrien Rabiot had levelled following Craig Goodwin’s shock early opener.
Les Bleus are the first defending champions to win their opening match since Brazil in 2006, which has already put them in good position to advance from the group phase, something Italy in 2010, Spain in 2014 and Germany in 2018 failed to do.
France, who lost defender Lucas Hernandez to a knee injury, have three points and lead Tunisia and Denmark by two after they played out a 0-0 draw on Tuesday.
Didier Deschamps’s France side, who started the tournament on the back of the disappointment of striker Karim Benzema being ruled out injured last Saturday, next face Denmark on Saturday.
It was not quite the start France were expecting at the Al Janoub stadium.
Goodwin smacked the ball into the roof of the net from Mathew Leckie’s cross from the right, leaving Lucas Hernandez holding his right knee after being beaten to the ball after nine minutes.
— FIFA World Cup (@FIFAWorldCup) November 22, 2022