By Le Figaro with AFP
The French under-17 football team qualified on Saturday for the semi-finals of the World Cup in Indonesia thanks to a success (1-0) against Uzbekistan.
In the stifling atmosphere of 90% humidity at the Manahan stadium in Surakarta, the young players led by Jean-Luc Vannuchi failed to materialize their large domination in the first period, marked by thirteen French shots all off target. And it was goalkeeper Paul Argney who made a decisive save just before the break. Striker Joan Tincres then missed a huge opportunity on the hour mark by deflecting the ball with her knee onto the post before heading wide.
The deliverance came in the 83rd minute: on a cross from the right from Yoram Zague, Mathis Lambourde saw his head hit the crossbar but Ismail Bouneb followed up to open the scoring. They trembled one last time in stoppage time, lasting ten minutes, but Argney preserved the inviolability of his goal.
France is still in the running to win the competition a second time, after the title won during the 2001 edition. Midfield teammates Nolan Ferro, who have not conceded a goal since the start of the tournament, will play their half- final Tuesday against Mali or Morocco, whose quarter-final will take place on Saturday. In the other match of the last four, Argentina will also face Germany on Tuesday.
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