VAR once more took centre stage at the top of France’s match with Tunisia with the referee ruling Antoine Griezmann’s goal out for offside – despite having already blown for full time. Tunisia were on track for a famous win over World Cup favourites France after Wahbi Khazri gave them the lead midway through the second half.
But with Australia beating Denmark 1-0, Tunisia’s hopes of qualifying for the knockout phase were shattered. Deep into stoppage time in the sport between France and Tunisia, players on the bench became aware that Australia’s match had already finished.
Their only saving grace was that they were going to finish the tournament with an excellent 1-0 win over France. But seconds after the Australia game had finished, Griezmann popped up with an equaliser for France in a cruel double blow for Tunisia.
Moments after France’s celebrations died down, the referee blew the ultimate whistle. Nonetheless, there was still time for more drama as FIFA’s VAR room indicated that the referee would wish to have a have a look at Griezmann’s goal.
Recent Zealander Matthew Conger decided that he was going to go over to the screen after being told of a possible offside. Images on the screen soon indicated that Griezmann was in an offside position when the ball was played excessive of Tunisia’s defence.
The actual fact a Tunisian defender got to the ball first had no bearing on the choice as Griezmann’s goal was eventually ruled out. Tunisian supporters immediately erupted into cheer with the nation’s goalkeeper seen kneeling to the ground and kissing the bottom.
The sport was then restarted with a free-kick to Tunisia in their very own box despite the full-time whistle already being blown. And the match official even added on some more time after the kick was taken with Tunisian players protesting for the whistle to be blown a second time.
The match eventually ended with Tunisian supporters once more breaking out into huge cheers despite the team being knocked out. France were at all times strong favourites to complete top whether or not they beat Tunisia.
Australia needed to overturn a six-goal deficit to knock France off of top spot in Group D. Now each France and Australia will wait to seek out out their last 16 opponents with Mexico, Argentina, Saudi Arabia and Poland all standing a probability of qualifying.