Dimitri Payet’s late goal helps Euro hosts France past Cameroon

  • AFP, AFP, Nantes (France)
  • Updated: Jun 08, 2016 16:26 IST
France's Dimitri Payet applauds to supporters after scoring the third goal during a friendly match.. (AP Photo)

West Ham’s Dimitri Payet scored a last-gasp wonder free-kick to help Euro 2016 hosts France snatch a dramatic 3-2 victory over Cameroon on Monday.

The attacking midfielder stepped up on the stroke of regulation time to curl a magnificent free-kick past Cameroon goalkeeper Fabrice Ondoa.

France opened the scoring through Paris Saint-Germain’s Blaise Matuidi before Cameroon immediately drew level thanks to Porto striker Vincent Aboubakar.

Arsenal striker Olivier Giroud handed the home side the lead again just before half-time, Eric Choupo Moting equalising before Payet’s cherry on the cake.

“There are things we can improve but it was our first match after a long period without competition for some players,” said France coach Didier Deschamps.

“It’s the first game that Adil Rami and Laurent Koscielny have played together in a long time and we were up against a quality team.

“Cameroon played in a new system with power and speed in midfield and up front,” said Deschamps, adding: “I wasn’t expecting perfection, but the spirit is there.”

Cameroon coach Hugo Broos said: “For me the score is 2-2 because we were only beaten by a magnificent free kick by Dimitri Payet, a real talent.

“The players can be proud of their performance. I hope we keep this same spirit against Mauritania (African Cup of Nations qualifier).”

France, who play Scotland in Metz on June 4 in their final warm-up match, open their Euro campaign against Romania on June 10.

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