Playing as the shield that allows Paul Pogba and Blaise Matuidi to break forward, the Foxes midfielder was as busy and strong as he has been all season for Claudio Ranieri.
He will likely always be the least celebrated player, especially against lesser sides, but his time will come when France face tougher tests than Romania.
Dimitri Payet, West Ham (France, 18th cap)
Playing in an inside forward role, Payet was a real threat to the Romanian defence.
However, he could not provide penetration until he produced a well-struck volley in the second half only to see the goalkeeper’s legs push it out for a corner.
But from the resulting play Payet produced a sumptuous cross to find Giroud in the middle who gave France the lead.
And then, with the game level and only minutes left, the 29-year-old sent Paris wild with a sensational left-footed strike from 20 yards, buried into the top left-hand corner with precision and power.
Olivier Giroud, Arsenal (France, 49th cap)
It was a typically Giroudian performance on opening night.