Jul 27, 2021

Mbappe Miss Proves Costly For France

Spread the love

Switzerland qualified through finishing third in Group A behind Italy and Wales.

FILE PHOTO: Kylian Mbappe missed the vital spot-kick for France. PICTURE: SkySports

Spread the love

BUDAPEST: France mentor Didier Deschamps opted for a tactical switch against Switzerland.

Kylian Mbappe saw his crucial penalty saved in the shoot-out as Euro 2020 favourites France were eliminated by Switzerland in the last 16.

There had been nine successful kicks in the shoot-out before Yann Sommer saved Mbappe’s effort, following an entertaining 3-3 draw in Bucharest.

Switzerland had fought back from 3-1 down to force extra time with two goals in the final 10 minutes through Haris Seferovic and Mario Gavranovic.

Before that, it had looked like world champions France would be going through to play Spain in the quarter-finals after two quickfire goals from Karim Benzema and a superb strike from Paul Pogba had overturned the early lead given to the Swiss by Seferovic.

But Switzerland, who had missed the chance to take a 2-0 lead when Hugo Lloris saved Ricardo Rodriguez’s penalty at the start of the second half, progressed with their first-ever penalty shoot-out success in a major competition.

Dubbed the group of death, world champions France finished top of Group F ahead of Germany and Portugal but head coach Didier Deschamps opted for a tactical switch against Switzerland, reverting to three centre-backs.

Benjamin Pavard returned to the team while Adrien Rabiot started at left wing-back in the absence of the injured Lucas Digne.

Switzerland qualified through finishing third in Group A behind Italy and Wales and they were unchanged from their convincing win against Turkey.

France made a bright start and should have taken the lead after only two minutes but Raphael Varane headed over from Antoine Griezmann’s corner when unmarked. The Real Madrid defender should have at least hit the target.

Manuel Akanji, Gavranovic, Fabian Schar, Ruben Vargas and Admir Mehmedi all scored for the Swiss in the shoot-out but Mbappe was unable to follow successful spot-kicks from team-mates Pogba, Giroud, Marcus Thuram and Presnel Kimpembe as Sommer pushed away his effort.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *