France were 2-0 down tonight at half time, before coming back to beat Iceland 3-2 in Valenciennes.
Newcastle’s Ben Arfa in action tonight
That’s potential Newcastle target Gylfi Sigurdsson on the left
During the first period, France looked a bit of a disjointed side, and were trying to string some passes together, and Iceland went ahead after 27 minutes through Birkir Bjarnason, and he was helped by some loose marking from Evra, as Bjarnason beat goalkeeper Steve Mandanda from a difficult angle.
Sigthorsson then added a second on 34 minutes, as he easily put the ball in the net from close range, after Rurik Gislason had been allowed to put his cross in from the right wing, as Evra again was asleep.
We wonder who’s going to be on England’s right wing on June 11th, as Evra is very good when going forward, but he can be mediocre when defending.
There was some evidence in the first half that France were getting their act together, and it was Karim Benzema, who was beautifully set up by Ben Arfa, but the Real Madrid striker put the ball past the post.
Immediately after the break the Newcastle player had a chance as he was nicely set up by Benzema chesting the ball down, but the Newcastle winger shot wide and it was a decent opportunity.
Yohan Cabaye beats Gylfi Sigurdsson to the ball
Newcastle target Mathieu Debuchy pulled a goal back for France after 52 minutes after Ben Arfa helped set him up.
But then Ben Arfa was replaced by Montpellier striker Olivier Giroud, and Cabaye was replaced by Diarra after 59 minutes, and we hope that Newcastle’s mercurial winger has done enough to make France’s final cut to 23 players for Euro2012.
And with just five minutes to go France were still 2-1 down, when Giroud put a nice pass to Ribery, and the Bayern Munich winger chipped the ball home to tie the scores at 2-2.
But then just a couple of minutes later France went ahead, and it was Giroud again, as he put in a nice header to set up Rami, who hit the ball first time into the back of the net for the win.
France struggled tonight, but at least Laurent Blanc’s team fought back in that second half to score three unanswered goals.
Here is a video of the goals:
France: Mandanda, Debuchy, Rami, Mexes, Evra, Cabaye (Diarra 59), Gourcuff (Ribery 75), Nasri (Martin 60), Ben Arfa (Giroud 59), Menez (Valbuena 75), Benzema (Malouda 60).
Subs Not Used: Carrasso, Matuidi, Reveillere, Clichy, Koscielny, Yanga M’Biwa.
Goals: Debuchy 52, Ribery 85, Rami 87.
Iceland: Halldorsson, Jonasson, Solvi Jonsson (Danielsson 65), Valgardsson (Skulason 58), Ragnar Sigurdsson, Bjarnason, Gunnarsson, Arnason, Gylfi Sigurdsson, Gislason (Gudmundsson 75), Sigthorsson (Hedinsson 46).
Subs Not Used: Gunnleifsson, Eggert Jonsson, Eyjolfsson, Finnbogason.
Booked: Ragnar Sigurdsson, Halldorsson.
Goals: Bjarnason 27, Sigthorsson 34.
Ref: Sebastien Delferiere (Belgium).