Mandzukic makes World Cup history with early own goal

From the heights of semifinal winner, Mario Mandzukic fell back to earth early in the World Cup final.

Mario Mandzukic scores an own goal in the World Cup final.   -  Getty Images

Mario Mandzukic has written himself into history in disastrous fashion by becoming the first player to score an own goal in a World Cup final.

The extra-time hero of Croatia's semifinal win over England turned villain when he flicked Antoine Griezmann's free-kick into his own net in the 18th minute of the 2018 decider at the Luzhniki Stadium.

Griezmann's delivery skimmed off the top of the towering Juventus forward's head and left goalkeeper Danijel Subasic with little chance, handing France an early advantage.

He was later joined in breaking new ground by Atletico Madrid man Griezmann, who converted the maiden penalty to be awarded by VAR in a final.

That came courtesy of a close-range handball on Ivan Perisic, the Inter man having earlier pulled Croatia level amid an action-packed first half.

Support Sportstar

Dear Reader,

Support our journalism — where text and pictures intermingle so seamlessly — and help us scale up your experience as the world changes around us. Your contribution is vital to our brand of uninfluenced, boots-on-the-ground reportage that’s worth your while. Clickbait sensationalism is not for us, but editorial independence is — we owe it to you.

  Dugout videos