Bengaluru/Doha, November 26: Kylian Mbappe poached a double as France became the first side to clinch a place in the last-16 stage at the Qatar 2022 FIFA World Cup with a hard-fought 2-1 win over Denmark at Stadium 974 on Saturday (November 26) night.
It took France until just past the hour mark to make a breakthrough, as Mbappe finished off an electrifying break.
Denmark were level seven minutes later when Andreas Christensen planted a close-range header past Hugo Lloris, and substitute Martin Braithwaite later clipped the post.
However, Mbappe was decisive when he bundled in Antoine Griezmann's cross from the right in the 86th minute.
After a goalless first half in which the defending champions dominated but failed to convert, defender Theo Hernandez linked up with the electric Mbappe, whose shot deflected off the heal of Andreas Christensen and into the back of the net to give France the lead in the 61st minute.
Denmark levelled seven minutes later, with Christensen making up for the deflection by blasting a powerful header past distraught French goalkeeper Hugo Lloris.
Mbappe finished the job in the 86th minute, converting on a cross from Antoine Griezmann and propelling the ball into the back of the net with his thigh.
France top Group D with six points, three ahead of Australia, who beat Tunisia 1-0 earlier in the day, with the Danes and the Tunisians both on one point.
France take on Tunisia and Denmark meet Socceroos in the final round
Having scored four during France's victorious 2018 campaign and one against Australia, Mbappe now has seven goals in nine FIFA World Cup appearances.
Didier Deschamps's side now have the luxury of going into their final group game against Tunisia knowing a draw will guarantee them top spot, and even a defeat may not prevent them finishing first.
(With inputs from Agencies)