Four days after being held 1-1 by Ukraine at Stade de France, the world champions built their first-half victory with home side goal Sergiy Maliy adding to Dembele’s opener before Kylian Mbappe did not miss a penalty in the second half.
France climbed to the top of the standings with four points, ahead of Bosnia, which they face away from home on Wednesday, Ukraine and Finland, who drew 1-1 on Sunday. Kazakhstan have zero points after playing their first game of the campaign.
Only captains Hugo Lloris and Antoine Griezmann remained of the squad that started against Ukraine, with the Barcelona forward setting a new record of 45 consecutive starts for Les Bleus.
He beat the previous mark of Patrick Vieira, who started 44 straight games between 1999 and 2002.
It was Griezmann’s club teammate Dembele who broke the deadlock in the 20th minute with a right-footed shot after being set up by Anthony Martial following a defensive pass from Paul Pogba.
Dembele has just returned to France, replacing in the second half against Ukraine more than two years after his previous selection in November 2018.
His third international goal in 23 appearances, his first since a 3-1 friendly win over Italy in June 2018, came as a welcome boost less than two months before coach Didier Deschamps named his squad for this year’s European Championship.
The Blues doubled the lead at the stroke of half-time when Maliy, who had just refused Martial, led a cross into his own net.
France were never threatened and had a big chance to add a third in the 76th minute, but Mbappe’s kick was saved by Aleksandr Mokin.
Wasted Germany defeats Romania
Germany maintained their perfect start in qualifying for the 2022 World Cup after an early goal from Serge Gnabry gave them a 1-0 victory over Romania in Group J on Sunday, although they missed a series of chances against the home side.
The result left the Germans at the top of the group with six points in two games ahead of Armenia on goal difference before their next home game against North Macedonia on Wednesday.
Gnabry scored a winner in the 17th minute as he brought the ball home to seven yards after Kai Havertz broke the offside trap on the right flank and delivered a perfect one-inch pass to the striker of the Bayern Munich.
Joshua Kimmich rocked the crossbar with a 30-meter thunderbolt two minutes later and Romanian goalkeeper Florin Nita then took center stage as he carried out a flurry of saves to deny the Cup winners of the world 2014 a bigger victory.
The subdued Romanians created very little at the other end, but midfielder Nicolae Stanciu missed a golden chance to snatch a draw for the home side when he hit the side net at close range in the 90th minute.
Armenia, who beat Iceland 2-0 earlier on Sunday thanks to goals from Khoren Bayramyan and Tigran Barseghyan, are at home against Romania on Wednesday while Iceland visit Lichtenstein in the other group game.
Meanwhile, Sweden won a 3-0 victory over Kosovo in Pristina with goals from Ludwig Augustinsson, Alexander Isak and a penalty from Sebastian Larsson.
Robert Lewandowski has scored twice Poland also relaxed to a 3-0 win over Andorra.
Belotti and Locatelli win Italy
From Italy Andrea Belotti and Manuel Locatelli clinched a 2-0 victory Bulgaria Sunday to claim two out of two wins in Group C at the start of their team’s 2022 World Cup qualifying campaign.
Italy struggled to break the hosts in the first half despite dominating possession, but took the lead with a penalty won and converted by Belotti two minutes before the break.
There were few chances in the second half but the visitors sealed a fifth consecutive victory – without conceding in this round – with eight minutes remaining thanks to the fine finish of Locatelli.
Italy will aim to continue their 100% start on Wednesday on their trip to Lithuania, while Bulgaria, who have now lost their first two matches, will then travel to Northern Ireland.
Spain wins over Georgia
Spain striker Dani Olmo won a 2-1 away win Georgia during their World Cup qualification on Sunday with a timeout strike from outside the area to reignite his team’s efforts to qualify for Qatar 2022 after a slow start.
Georgia delighted Boris Paichadze Dinamo Arena’s 15,000 fans when 20-year-old winger Khvicha Kvaratskhelia sacked them two minutes before halftime after his side passed a visiting passive defense.
Spain were on course for their first World Cup qualifying loss in 28 years until Ferran Torres equalized in the 56th, slipping to send a Jordi Alba cross into the roof of the net after Alvaro Morata failed to connect with the ball.
Luis Enrique’s team pushed for a winner to the end and finally found one when Olmo let it fly from afar and although goalkeeper Giorgi Loria had a hand on the shot he fell right under the crossbar and into the net.
Georgian Levan Shengelia was then sent off moments before the final whistle to signal Spain’s first Group B win after a 1-1 draw at home against Greece last Thursday.
Spain will host Kosovo on Wednesday, while Georgia will visit Greece.
Meanwhile, Denmark lit the style as they struggled miserably Moldova 8-0 in their World Cup qualifying on Sunday at the top of Group F, with Kasper Dolberg and Mikkel Damsgaard both scoring twice against the nation ranked 177th in the world.
The Danes took the lead in the 19th minute when Moldovan midfielder Catalin Carp took down Joachim Andersen and Dolberg sent the low penalty to the right of goalkeeper Stanislav Namasco.
Three minutes later they were two goals ahead when a terrible Moldovan defense allowed Andreas Skov Olsen to step in from the right and put Damsgaard in place to push the ball home, and the winger scored his second seven minutes later.
Full-back Jens Stryger Larsen added a fourth, slicing from the right before looping the ball into the net with his left foot and Mattias Jensen went 5-0 six minutes before the break.
Dolberg led his second place early in the second half before substitutes Robert Skov and Marcus Ingvartsen completed the scoring to leave the Danes in the lead with six points. Moldova have one point in their first two matches.