France denied early Euro rating with Turkey's draw
SAINT-DENIS (France): France must wait to claim a place in the 2020 Euro Cup after the world champions had a 1-1 draw at home for Turkey in a high octane qualifying game on Monday.
Turkey 's Kaan Ayhan equalised eight minutes from time after France substitute Olivier Giroud He opened the scoring in 76, as the visitors remained at the top of Group H with 19 points in eight games, ahead of Les Bleus due to a 2-0 victory at Konya last June.
Iceland is third with 15 points after goals from Arnor Sigurdsson and Kolbeinn Sigthorsson won a 2-0 home victory over Andorra, with Albania fourth with 12 points after a 4-0 victory against Moldova.
French police were on high alert after president Emmanuel Macron said Turkey 's military operation against Kurdish forces in Syria could lead to an “unsustainable humanitarian situation” and threatened to “help the Islamic State group re-emerge in the region".
With up to 40,000 Turkey fans expected at the stadium, some 1,000 police officers were on duty in and around the Stade de France to prevent potential crowd trouble, but the atmosphere remained peaceful throughout the evening.
We could have avoided that goal, said France coach Didier Deschamps. We did everything we needed to win that game, we had the chance, they didn't, but it is what it is.
"It's a good point. We'll have to finish the job in November," he added, saying Turkey , who have picked up four points against France, deserved to top the group.
We are the two best teams in the group. The qualifiers are always complicated, it's a long way. We should have been more efficient. They defended a lot and deserve to be where they are.
France take on Moldova and Turkey host Iceland in the next round of matches in November.
The world champions still didn't have the injured goalkeeper Hugo Lloris, striker Kylian Mbappe and midfielder Paul Pogba, and Wissam Ben Yedder took the lead instead of Giroud, who paid for his lack of playing time with Chelsea.
France were the most dangerous side as Turkey struggled to cope with the pace of Kingsley Coman but the visiting defence, which had conceded only two goals in qualifying so far, held firm.
The low shot of French midfielder Moussa Sissoko was blocked by goalkeeper Mert Gunok and Antoine Griezmann's curly shot widened when Les Bleus increased the pressure.
Turkey , however, created a chance to opening the scoring on the hour only for Burak Yilmaz to sky his attempt over the bar at the end of a quick counter attack.
With Ben Yedder struggling to find space, Deschamps replaced him with Giroud in the 72nd minute and the replacement took four minutes to cause an impact, heading home with Griezmann's corner kick.
The hosts' joy, however, was short-lived as Turkey levelled six minutes later when Ayhan nodded in a free kick.