France Vs Costa Rica[2 - 1] Valbuena Goal ----------------------------------------- Debutant Mathieu Valbuena lent weight to his World Cup claims with a late winner as France continued their World Cup build-up by battling to victory against Costa Rica. The South American side took a shock lead through Carlos Hernandez and, though Franck Ribery quickly levelled, an inspired goalkeeping display from Keylor Navas looked set to secure a draw. But substitute Valbuena found a way through from long range as Raymond Domenech,s side deservedly emerged victorious. After early French pressure, Sidney Govou forced Navas to parry his shot around the post but Florent Malouda,s corner came to nothing. And Costa Rica struck against the run of play in the 11th minute when midfielder Hernandez,s low 25-yard strike beat keeper Steve Mandanda and nestled in the bottom corner. France responded with a Ribery drive which Navas blocked, before Yoann Gourcuff sent an ambitious 35-yard free-kick goalwards. Navas was equal to that 21st-minute effort, but he could do nothing a minute later when Jeremy Toulalan played in Ribery to slot the ball left-footed across the keeper and inside the far post. Bryan Ruiz saw a long-range effort tipped over by Mandanda before Gourcuff shot over from 20 yards. The visitors went close to restoring their lead as Michael Barrantes swung in a left-wing corner to the centre of the penalty area, where Ruiz rose highest to head against the crossbar. Ticos striker Josue Martinez departed with a serious-looking injury to be replaced by Winston Parks, and Navas made another sharp save from Ribery just before half-time. France defender William Gallas had been handed a starting berth as he sought to prove his fitness following a calf injury, but was replaced by Sebastien Squillaci at the interval. Gourcuff was to the fore early in the second half, firing a warning shot wide from 20 yards before a second effort from much further out was tipped over by Navas. Another half-time substitute, Thierry Henry, then failed to find the target from within the six-yard box before the impressive Navas tipped another Gourcuff drive around the post. Valbuena replaced Govou and soon shot wide from 18 yards, and Navas denied Squillaci from close range after Gourcuff,s corner was not cleared. Parks and Randall Azofeifa threatened from distance for the South American side, with Henry seeing an effort blocked by Gonzalo Segares in between times. But Valbuena made the crucial impact with seven minutes remaining when he was teed up by Abou Diaby and drove the ball low beyond Navas from 25 yards. Andre-Pierre Gignac replaced Ribery and twice threatened to add a third as France comfortably saw the game out

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