Moscow — France won the World Cup for the second time by ending battling Croatia’s dream of a first title with a 4-2 victory on Sunday in one of the most entertaining and action-packed finals for decades. France led 2-1 at half-time after a Mario Mandzukic own goal and an Antoine Griezmann VAR penalty, with Ivan Perisic briefly bringing first-time finalists Croatia level. Quickfire strikes by Paul Pogba and Kylian Mbappe midway through the second half put France on course for the title but Mandzukic was gifted a goal by French keeper Hugo Lloris to set up a nervous last 20 minutes. France, however, withstood a spirited Croatia assault to lift the trophy for the second time, following their success on home soil 20 years ago. The victory means Didier Deschamps, who captained the 1998 side, becomes the third man to win the World Cup as player and coach after Brazil’s Mario Zagallo and Germany’s Franz Beckenbauer.

It was the highest-scoring final since England beat West Germany 4-...

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