A 2-0 home loss to the world champions means that Finland ranks third in the block and is only one point out of the playoffs.
The hopes of the Finnish national football team to reach next year’s World Cup finals in Qatar were shattered on Tuesday night by a 2-0 defeat to the world champion France at the Helsinki Olympic Stadium.
Loss means Owls (or Eagle Owls) finishes third in the qualifiers in Group D and will not advance to the next stage with just one place and one point.
Instead, Ukraine, whose September 2-1 victory in Helsinki has proved decisive, will compete for a place in the finals next March in the playoffs.
Finland was in second place in the block on Tuesday, but had to beat France to secure its place in the playoffs. Otherwise, Finnish fans hoped that Ukraine would not be able to beat Bosnia and Herzegovina in the second match of the group on Tuesday night.
After an hour of playing in both games, Finland’s dream of reaching the World Cup final for the first time was still on track until everything changed in fifteen dramatic minutes.
In the first place Oleksandr Zinchenko gave Ukraine the lead against Bosnia and Herzegovina – that is, Finland should now win against France. Within five minutes of Zinchenko’s goal at Zenica, Real Madrid Karim Benzema scored for France in Helsinki.
Kylian Mbappe then added a fantastic second to France two minutes before the switch Artem Dovbyk scored another goal for Ukraine.
Both matches ended 2-0 for the away team, meaning France was in the top 18 with 12 points, Ukraine with 12 points and Finland with 11 points.