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Joy and pain for lads in play-offs

Posted on 19 November 2013  - 23:15

It was World Cup joy for Hugo Lloris but agony for Vlad Chiriches and Gylfi Sigurdsson in Tuesday night's play-off, second legs.

Hugo celebrates with his team-mates after France made it to next summer's World Cup Finals with a 3-0 win against UkraineVlad takes on Greece's Georgio SamarasGylfi Sigurdsson closes in on Luka Modric

Hugo captained the team as France completed mission improbable against Ukraine at the Stade de France.

Trailing 2-0 from the first leg in Kiev, France were level on aggregate by half-time thanks to goals from Mamadou Sakho and Karim Benzema.

Ukraine's Yevhen Khacheridi was then sent off for a second yellow card two minutes into the second half and France finally grabbed the decisive third goal on 72 minutes when Oleg Gusev deflected the ball into his own net.

Hugo was barely troubled after that and France were left to celebrate their passage to Brazil on the final whistle.

Vlad Chiriches and Romania had it all to do in the second leg after losing 3-1 in Greece on Friday.

Vlad missed that game with a nose injury sustained in our last outing against Newcastle but he returned to captain the team in Bucharest.

However, Romania's tough test was made even harder when Konstantinos Mitroglou opened the scoring for the visitors in the 23rd minute, meaning Romania had to score a minumum of four goals.

They managed one via an own goal from Vasileios Torosidis on 55 minutes but it stayed 4-2 on aggregate. Vlad completed the 90 minutes.

Gylfi Sigurdsson and Iceland also had a tough task as they travelled to Zagreb to meet Croatia after the first leg finished 0-0 in Reyjkevic.

Mario Mandzukic put Croatia 1-0 up in the 27th minute but the striker gave Iceland a lifeline by getting himself sent off before the interval.

But before Iceland could make any numerical advantage really count, Darijo Srna struck a second for Croatia just two minutes into the second half and that's how it stayed - 2-0 on the night and 2-0 on aggregate.