Kylian Mbappe misses penalty as France beat Kazakhstan in World Cup qualifier

Didier Deschamps' side seal 2-0 victory in Nur-Sultan, with Barcelona's Ousmane Dembele among the scorers

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Defending champions France beat Kazakhstan 2-0 in a World Cup qualifier on Sunday, despite substitute Kylian Mbappe missing a penalty.

Barcelona's Ousmane Dembele scored the holders' opening goal in what was their second qualification game for the 2022 finals in Qatar.

Kazakh defender Sergey Maliy put through his own net for France's second goal before half-time but Paris Saint-Germain attacker Mbappe saw a second-half penalty saved after coming off the bench.

It was still a welcome result for Didier Deschamps' side after they kicked off their campaign in qualifying Group D by drawing 1-1 at home to Ukraine last Wednesday.

Deschamps' side now stop off in Sarajevo to take on Bosnia and Herzegovina on Wednesday to complete a hectic start to qualifying, before reverting their focus to the delayed Euro 2020 in June.

In an attempt to keep his squad fresh, Deschamps made nine changes to his line-up following the Ukraine draw for the match in Nur-Sultan, more than 5,000 kilometres east of Paris in Central Asia.

Antoine Griezmann, who scored France's goal against Ukraine, was the only outfield player to keep his place in the side, while Hugo Lloris again started in goal as he won his 122nd cap.

Griezmann's Barca teammate Dembele was one of those brought into the team as he started a competitive game for France for the first time since the triumphant 2018 World Cup campaign in Russia.

It was Dembele who got the breakthrough in the 20th minute, controlling on the edge of the box and finishing with a low drive into the corner of the net after good work by Manchester United's Anthony Martial.

France scored again a minute before half-time when defender Maliy headed a Griezmann corner into his own net as he tried to hold off another United player in Paul Pogba.

That effectively ended any doubt about the outcome of the contest with Kazakhstan, ranked 122nd in the world, struggling to create any chances at the other end.

Martial took a knock and was eventually replaced just before the hour mark by Mbappe, who had several chances to add to France's lead.

The best opportunity for the PSG star came from the spot in the 75th minute after he had been brought down by Nuraly Alip.

However, Mbappe's kick was turned around the post by home goalkeeper Aleksandr Mokin.