Edin Dzeko’s first-half goal helped Bosnia hold 10-man France to a 1-1 draw in World Cup qualifying in Strasbourg.
The Inter Milan striker surprisingly opened the scoring for the visitors in front of a sell-out crowd, but was also unfortunate to gift Antoine Griezmann an equaliser moments later.
Jules Kounde was sent off in the second half for a heavy tackle and Les Bleus were forced to settle for a point after only producing one shot on target against a plucky Bosnia side.
The result leaves France top of Group D on eight points and four clear of second-placed Ukraine. For Bosnia, the point moves them off the bottom into fifth on two points.
In France’s first international match in over two months, Didier Deschamps’ side looked rusty in the opening half an hour. The hosts’ best chance of the period fell to Kylian Mbappe in the 27th minute, but the wantaway Paris Saint-Germain forward’s powerful drive from a very tight angle smashed off the woodwork.
France’s ponderous start to the game proved costly ten minutes later when Thomas Lemar’s lazy pass in midfield was intercepted by Dzeko, before Bosnia’s all-time highest goalscorer grabbed his 60th international goal with a powerful low strike into the bottom corner.
Les Bleus got a fortunate equaliser in the 41st minute when a corner swung in was nodded by Dzeko off the back of Griezmann and crept over the line. With no goal-line technology at the Stade de la Meinau, the goal was eventually awarded after a lengthy VAR review.
France were dealt a blow in the 58th minute when Kounde was sent off for a reckless challenge on Sead Kolasinac after another VAR check.
The red appeared to take the sting out of France’s attack and they were unable to fashion out any clear chances against a Bosnia side who sat deep and soaked up the waves of pressure that came their way.
Dzeko fashioned out a chance to win it in the 80th minute when he masterfully chested the ball before letting a volley go, but his shot veered well wide.
Portugal 2-1 R. of Ireland
France 1-1 Bosnia
Denmark 2-0 Scotland
Norway 1-1 Netherlands
Kazakhstan 2-2 Ukraine
Luxembourg 2-1 Azerbaijan
Faroe Islands 0-4 Israel
Moldova 0-2 Austria
Latvia 3-1 Gibraltar
Turkey 2-2 Montenegro
Malta 3-0 Cyprus
Russia 0-0 Crotia