July 6, 2018 / 3:57 PM / 2 months ago

Soccer-France beat Uruguay 2-0 to reach semi-finals

NIZHNY NOVGOROD, Russia, July 6 (Reuters) - Raphael Varane’s glancing header and a goalkeeping blunder that gifted Antoine Griezmann a soft goal gave France a 2-0 victory over Uruguay in the first World Cup quarter-final on Friday and a set up a last-four tie with Brazil or Belgium.

Varane’s 40th-minute header from a Griezmann free kick was only the second goal Uruguay had conceded all tournament. The South Americans went close to equalising just before the break only for Martin Caceres’s goal-bound header to be brilliantly turned onto a post by goalkeeper Hugo Lloris.

But it was an error by Uruguay keeper Fernando Muslera that settled it when he tried to palm a routine long-range, swerving Griezmann shot after 61 minutes but misjudged it and allowed it to slip past him.

Uruguay, hard-hit by the absence of injured key striker Edinson Cavani, showed plenty of commitment trying to find a way back but France controlled the ball well to secure their Saint Petersburg semi-final slot.

Reporting by Mitch Phillips, editing by Christian Radnedge

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