French soccer fans celebrate after beating Australia

STORY: Among the cheers of "Allez les Bleues!" and waving flags, fans said their team would go into their next match against Denmark with "confidence".

"Now the hardest thing is to go right to the end, win the cup, that's another thing," said Stephane Charles from Paris.

Australia had taken a stunning lead when Craig Goodwin applied a super finish to Mathew Leckie's cross after nine minutes, but France levelled when Adrien Rabiot headed home and Giroud's tap-in gave them the halftime lead.

Kylian Mbappe's glancing header in the 68th minute was followed by Giroud's 51st international goal three minutes later, drawing him level with Thierry Henry as France's all-time top marksman.

"I legitimately thought we were going to win the World Cup there for 15 minutes but unfortunately France were too good," Miles Benham from Melbourne said.

"I jumped into a grown man's arms in excitement in the first half, it was absolutely incredible, but leaving empty handed today unfortunately."