France Score Thanks To First Important Use Of Goal-Line Technology

France made quick work of Honduras today, mostly thanks to a first half foul in the box that resulted in a French penalty and a second yellow for Honduras's Wilson Palacios. The game was put out of reach in the 48th minute when Karim Benzema's shot caromed off the post, deflected off the goalkeeper's arm, and rolled towards the line before the keeper could yank it back out.

As you can see, even from the video replay, it's hard to determine whether the ball completely cleared the goal line. We've outlined before exactly how FIFA's goal-line technology works, and it appears to be more accurate the human eye can detect even with the help of replay.

Still, there is one part of the goal that FIFA might review after the match: Whether or not France's striker had a hat trick.


Benzema scored the penalty in the first half, added another late in the match, and created this goal, which was blamed on Honduras keeper Noel Valladares. The own goal rule isn't codified in FIFA's Laws of the Game, but in post-match coverage ESPN's Bob Ley read from a rule that said a goal-bound shot that rebounds off the woodwork and deflects off a defender or goalkeeper into the back of the net should not be considered an own goal.

So, Benzema's shot will be the first one confirmed by goal-line technology, and probably makes him only the second Frenchman to score a hat trick in the World Cup. The future and the past, coming together as one.