19 Nov 2009

Thierry Henry's hand ball gets France to football world cup

6:41 pm on 19 November 2009

All 32 teams to compete at next year's football world cup in South Africa have been decided, but controversy surrounds France's involvement after the 1998 champions beat Ireland in Paris.

Defender William Gallas scored the extra time goal that sent France to next year's tournament with a 2-1 aggregate playoff win.

Captain Thierry Henry first stopped the ball from going out with his arm, then controlled it with his hand in the penalty area before crossing to Gallas to score.

Henry freely admits he handled the ball but says it's down to the referee to stop the game while Ireland captain Roy Keane says it's a devastating way to miss out on the world cup, adding the foul was so blatant Henry all but picked up the ball and walked it into the goal.

In other matches Russia was eliminated after losing 1-0 in Slovenia.

Russia went into the second leg match up 2-1 only to finish it with nine men after conceding the goal that got Slovenia to South Africa on the away goals rule.

Portugal and Greece qualified after a 1-0 wins in Bosnia and Ukraine respectively and Algeria beat Egypt 1-0 in Khartoum.

While Uruguay grabbed the last berth with a 1-all draw with Costa Rica in Montevideo.