BRASILIA, Brazil — Paul Pogba scored with a late header to finally break Nigeria’s stubborn resistance and Joseph Yobo added an own-goal as France won, 2-0, to reach the World Cup quarterfinals on Monday.
Nigeria goalkeeper Vincent Enyeama had just made a superb save to tip over Karim Benzema’s header, but he flapped at the ball from the ensuing corner and Pogba pounced in the 79th minute to nod in his first goal of the tournament.
Pogba atoned for a scrappy first half in which he gave the ball away carelessly and placed a volley too close to Enyeama. Scoring such a crucial goal will boost his confidence heading into the quarterfinal game on Friday at Rio’s Maracana Stadium.
‘‘I'm very happy and proud to be among the last eight teams left, and honestly the players deserve it,’’ France coach Didier Deschamps said. ‘‘We have four days left to prepare for another battle.’’
Yobo turned the ball into his own net in stoppage time under pressure from France substitute Antoine Griezmann — who made a big difference after replacing the ineffective Olivier Giroud in the 62d.
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