Kylian Mbappe's captaincy era begins with dominant victory over Netherlands
France edged past Netherlands by capping off a dominant 4-0 victory. A brace from French skipper Kylian Mbappe and goals from Antoine Griezmann and Dayot Upamecano sealed off a comfortable victory for the hosts.
The French national team bounced back with a 4-0 victory against Netherlands in the UEFA Euro 2024 qualifiers on Friday, after their World Cup final defeat against Argentina. A brace from French skipper Kylian Mbappe and goals from Antoine Griezmann and Dayot Upamecano allowed the French team to tame the Dutch Lions. Griezmann set the tone of the match in the opening two minutes of the game. He won the possession in the middle of the pitch with a perfectly timed slide tackle. Griezmann sprinted towards the opposition box and found the back of the net, following a cut back pass from the new French captain Kylian Mbappe.
This goal opened the floodgates as Bayern Munich's defender Upamecano scored the second goal of the match just six minutes later following a set piece. The hosts continued to create knock on Netherlands goal again and again. Their efforts finally paid off as Kylian Mbappe marked his captaincy era with a goal in the 21st minute of the game. Aurelien Tchouameni's pass pierced through Netherlands' defensive formation to find Mbappe, who made no mistake in one on one chance against Jasper Cillessen. Netherlands spirits took a huge blow as they found themselves three goals down even before the clock struck the half-hour mark. They tried to regroup and fight with all their might in a losing battle, but the lack of sharpness in the attacking third kept them off the scoring sheet. Mbappe found his second goal in the final moments of the game. Once again Netherlands dug their own grave as a misplaced back pass fell right into the path of the newly crowned French captain. Mbappe didn't fail to punish Netherlands for their mistake and scored the final goal of the match.
The visitors had the opportunity to add some respect to the scoreline in the last kick of the game. A last minute penalty fell their way but Memphis Depay couldn't capitalise on the opportunity. He went for precision instead of power, but Mike Maignan read his intentions and kept the score intact. Depay had a chance to follow up as the ball once again came his way after the initial save. He went for the spectacular but ended up completely missing the ball. The final whistle blew echoed around and the entire stadium erupted with screams of happiness. France will face Ireland on Tuesday at Aviva Stadium. (ANI)
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