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The honours were shared in a repeat of the Euro 2012 quarter-final showdown and the Real Madrid attacker insists the last-minute equaliser was vital to their campaign aspirations

France striker Karim Benzema has hailed the 1-1 draw with Spain as an “important” result in their World Cup Group I qualifying clash.

Olivier Giroud’s late equaliser cancelled out Sergio Ramos’ opener to claim a precious away point for Les Bleus at Vicente Calderon stadium which ended Spain coach Vicente del Bosque's run of 20 successive victories in qualification.

And the Real Madrid striker Benzema was quick to speak of the result’s significance.

“It is very important for us to get such a result against the best team in the world,” Benzema told reporters.

“In the second part we were very good. We scored in the last second and that's very important for us."

The draw leaves both sides level at the top of Group I on seven points but Benzema still feels it is Spain who are favourites to progress as group winners.

“Spain remains the top seed in the group but we have to continue like this.” He added.

France host Georgia in the next round of qualifying fixtures on March 22.

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