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France on brink of World Cup, Dutch hopes all but over

12 October 2017
France on brink of World Cup, Dutch hopes all but over

France kept their noses in front in the European Group A race to qualify for the 2018 World Cup as Blaise Matuidi's early strike earned a 1-0 win in Bulgaria on Saturday.

The job of World Cup qualification isn't done yet for France, who sit in first place in Group A of UEFA qualifying, but have not yet secured themselves a spot in Russian Federation next summer.

The French now lead the way on 20 points, but Sweden sit just one point behind as they travel to the Netherlands, threatening automatic qualification.

An own goal from Johan Djourou handed Portugal the lead on 41 minutes and Andre Silva netted a second before the hour as they finished top of Group B ahead of Switzerland on goal difference.

"To lose the first qualifying match, just after our win at Euro 2016, hurt us". Fortunately for France, that was one of just five points that Belarus have earned, and they've lost six of eight qualifying matches since then, including getting outscored 8-1 in their last three matches, all losses.

"They're coming here to defend so we will have to find the solution".

In the Europe Confederation, Belgium, England, Germany, Iceland, Poland, Russia, Serbia and Spain have all qualified for the World Cup next summer in Russia.

Steven Zuber scored twice in Basel as Switzerland made it nine wins from nine by thrashing Hungary 5-2.

In Group H, Greece moved into second place with a come-from-behind 2-1 victory in Cyprus after Bosnia and Herzegovina had suffered a stunning 4-3 home defeat by already-qualified Belgium. But hey, these two goals are historic, then take the opportunity. We have youngsters who have a huge amount of talent and the older players are still on it.