France defeated South Korea 3-1 on Tuesday after late goals from Gueida Fofana and Alexandre Lacazette, leaving both teams precariously poised in the group stage at the Under-20 World Cup.

Fofana scored in the 81st to break a 1-1 deadlock and Lacazette closed out the scoring in stoppage time.

Gilles Sunu gave France the lead in the 27th before Kim Young-uk equalized in the 59th with a free kick.

The victory may have saved France's tournament after its opening 4-1 loss to Colombia.

''After the first match we really felt down,'' Lacazette said. ''But our friends and family told us to forget it and look forward to the next match.''

Both France and South Korea have three points in Group A after two matches, with four points usually needed to make the knockout round.

France plays Friday against Mali at Cali, and South Korea takes on host Colombia on the same day at Bogota. Both could still get through with draws, but victories will guarantee qualification.

France coach Francis Smerecki was taken aback when a local reporter asked him if his team deserved to win the game.

''We earned it,'' he said. ''Just like Colombia deserved winning the first game.''

France opened the scoring when Sunu drilled in Timothee Kolodziejczak's header from a corner.

Kim's 20-meter (yard) free kick high into the corner beat France keeper Jonathan Ligali to make it 1-1 with a half hour remaining.

Fofana's shot with nine minutes remaining deflected off Kim Jin-su's head and past South Korean goalkeeper Yang Han-been.

''I think after we went behind 2-1 we lost some focus,'' South Korea coach Lee Kwang-jong said. ''We know we need at least a draw against Colombia.''

South Korea reached the quarterfinals in 2009, its best result at the Under-20 tournament.