Date: 15th November 2009 at 2:57pm
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Ireland suffered a huge knock to their chances of reaching the world cup after an undeserved 1-0 home defeat to France. Chelsea striker Nicholas Anelka`s deflected shot in off the post gave the French the advantage going into Wednesday`s second leg.

Both Glenn Whelan and Liam Lawrence started the match at Croke Park, with Whelan playing in his natural position of central midfield and Lawrence out on the right wing.

Lawrence missed a golden first half chance, after a fortunate knock down from Robbie Keane he had the goal gaping but his volley was fortunately diverted past the post by Manchester United`s Patrice Evra. After Anelka`s 14th international goal, Whelan had a chance to level things up in the dying minutes but his effort was smothered by keeper Lloris.

There is still hope though for the Green Army as they head to Paris on Wednesday knowing that France`s home record in recent times is abysmal and Ireland did mange to draw away at world champions Italy in the group stages.