The Socceroos have frustratingly failed to bring away any points from their first game of the World Cup at Russia’s Kazan Arena as they went down 2-1 to France.
The opening Group C game involved a controversial video assistant referee (VAR) decision, which was used for the first time in World Cup history.
The game opened with France’s Kylian Mbappe, Antoine Griezmann and Paul Pogba all having shots on target within the first five minutes.
But the first half turned promising for Australia with the first and only real chance, when Aaron Mooy’s wicked free-kick was flicked on by Mathew Leckie, before the ball took a deflection off the boot of Corentin Tolisso and forced goalkeeper Hugo Lloris into a low save to his left.
As they went into the break 0-0 the Socceroos looked composed and confident against an unconvincing France.
However Griezmann scored the first goal in the 58th after being awarded a penalty from the VAR decision after Josh Risdon was judged to have brought him down. But the lead only lasted 4 minutes as Mile Jedinak equalised from a penalty after a blatant handball from Umtiti!
The score remained 1-1 up until the final 10 minutes, but as Pogba went on his first direct run into the penalty area of the match and although tackled by Behich, the defender flicked the ball over a hapless Ryan which hits the underside of the crossbar and goes just over the line, to give France the winner.
After the match Van Marwijk said how he believed his team deserved a draw. “We gave a very good performance,” he said. “Nobody expected we could play this way against France. A lot of times, they said, the players of France they didn’t know what to do.
‘If you lose with a penalty … and a lucky goal just before the end,” he said with a shrug of his shoulders, disappointment etched into his every expression.
”When you see this game it must give you confidence for the rest of tournament. But it’s never a guarantee. Everybody could see today that this is a different team and one of the most positive things also is that we showed guts and that we could be ourselves.
”It gives us confidence I think.”