A second-half penalty try, awarded when Anthony Watson was penalised for a high tackle on Benjamin Fall and yellow-carded, gave France the edge after a dire first 40 had ended with the score level at 9-9.
Ireland's victory moved them on to 19 points from four matches, meaning England needed to register a bonus-point victory over France in Paris to keep their hopes of a third successive Six Nations title alive.
Nine years on and Sexton is very much the man for Ireland.
Paris - England hooker Jamie George said his team will be motivated to fix their own problems rather than stop Ireland winning the Grand Slam next weekend.
THE 20-point margin of defeat suffered against Ireland yesterday does not do justice to the quality of Scotland's performance, Greig Laidlaw insisted last night.
Scotland had their chances but weren't as accurate, and butchered at least two tries.
Sure, they'll enjoy tonight's celebrations but Ireland's eye now turns to the ultimate prize.
Ireland's Jacob Stockdale scores a try against Scotland during the Six Nations rugby match at the Aviva Stadium in Dublin, Ireland, Saturday March 10, 2018.
Asked if it felt like a special achievement, Schmidt said: "From a wider squad perspective it is, because Josh van der Flier will be delighted, and the players have worked hard to get a medal for Josh. It's just important that we go to Twickenham and play how we want to play and show an improvement - that's all that matters". I think if you said at the start of the season that you're going to win a Championship without Josh, Sean (O'Brien), Jamie Heaslip, Rhys Ruddock, Robbie Henshaw, and then to lose Chris Farrell as well, and there's others in that list as well... Ireland have denied them grand slams twice in recent years and they will be desperate to repay the favour.
It was England's second defeat in a row after they lost to Scotland in the previous round of matches and only their third in 27 matches under coach Eddie Jones. For us it was a big learning curve. "We defended well and we always went forward". Ireland are set to leapfrog England in the World Rankings when they are released on Monday, with Joe Schmidt's men set to be officially ranked as the number two team in the world.
Machenaud levelled Jonny May when the Leicester wing was running at full tilt as England struggled to make an headway, their early goal seeping away as France drew level with two more penalties from their scrum-half general.
If France were disappointed not to add to their lead with their opponents down to 14, they soon shrugged off that disappointment, Machenaud slotting his fourth penalty after their rivals had once again transgressed.
'There will be moments next week when we need to dig deep, and we've a lot of big leaders in that squad.