World Cup Hosts Downed By France

Russia’s winless run extended to five games as they were defeated 3-1 by France in an international friendly in Moscow.

Stanislav Cherchesov’s team had been defeated 3-0 by Brazil on Friday but were hoping for better this time out against a French side who surrendered a two-goal advantage in being defeated 3-2 by Colombia last time out.

Kylian Mbappe scored twice in Russia

But the Russians were again second best as Paris Saint-Germain forward Kylian Mbappe scored twice for Didier Deschamps’ men.

The French, one of the World Cup favourites, had surrendered a two-goal advantage in losing to Colombia last Friday, but never looked like repeating the feat this time out.

Manchester United’s Paul Pogba, who won his 50th international cap against Colombia, was also on target, with Russia forward Fyodor Smolov reducing the arrears midway through the second half before Mbappe completed the scoring seven minutes from time.

Russia face two more friendlies – against Austria and Turkey – before kicking off the tournament against Saudi Arabia on 14 June.

France will take on Republic of Ireland, Italy and USA before their first World Cup match, against Australia two days after the hosts.

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