N’Golo Kante hailed Paul Pogba’s decisive contribution to France’s opening World Cup win over Australia on Saturday.
The midfielder got his tournament off to a great start in France’s 2-1 victory despite a frustrating season at Manchester United, playing a key role in winning the penalty Antoine Griezmann converted.
He then hit a deflected winner 10 minutes from time, but FIFA belatedly marked the strike down as an own goal from Socceroos defender Aziz Behich.
Kante, who lined up alongside Pogba at the heart of Les Bleus’ midfield, has praised the 25-year-old’s desire to win and professionalism.
He said: “Everyone knows Paul. We all know he is really talented.
“He has a lot of quality. I think he played a good game yesterday [Saturday]. Away from the pitch, he has his own character, he is a match winner, a great professional.
“I think he wanted the win so much, he fought to win. We are happy for him that he scored his goal. Paul is a match winner, he gives everything to win. He helped us a lot yesterday.”
Pogba and Kante are likely to line up for France when they continue their Group C campaign against Peru at the Ekaterinburg Arena on Thursday.