Let’s make one thing abundantly clear right from the start: Hugo Lloris is and excellent goalkeeper, and everyone has a bad day at the office every so often. But hoooooooo boy will Hugo want this one back! Tottenham Hotspur’s and France’s No. 1 conceded a 93’ winner to Sweden’s Ola Toivonen as the Swedes knocked off France 2-1 in UEFA World Cup qualifying. That was bad enough, but it was worse because it was a freakin’ fifty yard goal made possible after Hugo unwisely rushed out and tried to play fullback.
Here’s the goal, in all its inauspicious glory.
There’s nothing unlucky about this play, even though Hugo was under pressure and didn’t have any defenders around him to pass to. It was a pure, bonafide gaffe — a hospital ball that Toivonen wisely sussed out — and the Swede had the foresight to plunk a long-range effort into an empty net.
Afterwards, France manager Didier Deschamps refused to castigate his keeper.
"I am not going to condemn Hugo. He has often been decisive with us.
"He preferred to control the ball. If he clears the ball far and away, there is no way it comes back. But he knows that. He knows it is his fault and it cost us.
"He is a keeper who made a mistake and it is noticed more than an outfield player. It is unfortunate for him and for the whole team. The players were extremely dejected, Hugo most of all. Losing always hurts and under these circumstances it hurts more."
The loss puts France second in their qualifying group, behind Sweden on goal differential. Ouch.
Elsewhere in European World Cup qualifying, Vincent Janssen scored an 84th minute penalty, his second goal in two international games, as the Netherlands destroyed Luxembourg 5-0 in Rotterdam. Also, Jan Vertonghen and Toby Alderweireld both started and played 90 minutes in a back three as Belgium defeated Estonia 2-0 behind goals from former Tottenham player Nacer Chadli and Dries Mertens.