Raphael Varane in action for France

Varane and Eriksen feature as France beat Denmark

Saturday 26 November 2022 19:05

Manchester United's Raphael Varane and Christian Eriksen faced each other as France overcame Denmark to win 2-1 and book their place in the round of 16 at the World Cup.

Varane made his official return from injury this evening when he was named in the France starting XI, as Eriksen lined up in the opposing midfield. 

Kylian Mbappe opened the scoring on the hour mark after excellent link-up play with Theo Hernandez. But just eight minutes later, Denmark equalised through a pinpoint Eriksen corner that was flicked on and eventually headed home emphatically by Andreas Christensen. 

But just under five minutes before the end, Mbappe stepped up once again to get on the end of Antoine Griezmann's unstoppable cross and snatch all three points. 


Eriksen's Denmark will need to defeat Australia in matchday three to reach the knockouts.

In the first half, Denmark struggled to get a foothold in the game, with their two significant efforts on goal both coming from range and flying wide of Hugo Lloris's goal. 

France, on the other hand, dominated and were unlucky to not go in at the break multiple goals to the good.

Hernandez's floated ball into the box created the game's first clear cut chance, where Adrian Rabiot headed it into the path of Olivier Giroud but the striker couldn't make the desired connection. 

Christiansen picked up a yellow card midway through the first half after bundling over Mbappe, who had made a darting run between the defenders signalling and almost breaking beyond the backline. 

The best chance of the half felt to Rabiot, but his thumping header was saved well by Kasper Schmeichel. 

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It was Hernandez who was involved once again to break the deadlock, playing a lovely one-two with Mbappe before the latter's instinctive finish flew past the Danish keeper to give France the lead. 

Much to the dismay of their travelling fans, however, their joy was short lived. 

Denmark were quick to try and get back into the game, and an Eriksen corner provided the perfect route. Our no.14 whipped a ball in, which was nodded into the path of Christensen whose headed finish rattled the back of the net in emphatic fashion. 

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Varane was substituted off with 15 minutes to go as France went in search of an equaliser, and it would come in the closing stages through Mbappe once again. 

The Frenchman was on the end of a deliriously good ball into the box from Griezmann, and helped it on its way rather unconventionally to snatch all three points and secure safe passage to the round of 16. 

For Eriksen and Denmark, however, their fate will be decided on the last group game when they will take on Australia in an attempt to progress in the tournament.