France, by beating Croatia (4-2) on the same score as in the final of the last World Cup, and Portugal, thanks to a double from Cristiano Ronaldo against Sweden (2-0), continued Tuesday, September 8 their unblemished course in the UEFA Nations League.
The world champions, thanks to three minutes of madness, just before the break, and especially two goals from Antoine Griezmann (43e) and Anthony Martial (45e+1, attributed to the Croatian goalkeeper because the ball bounced off his head after hitting the post), first made up for a failed first half hour against the still talented and enterprising Croats.
“For a good half hour, we were largely dominated in aggression, so we are doing well”, said Didier Deschamps at the break, on TF1. “In terms of technical quality, we can do better”, he added, lucid. As in the final of the World Cup, two years ago in Russia, the Croats had indeed opened the scoring, this time on a jewel of Lovren, the former player of Monaco: a perfect control followed by a unstoppable left shot, even by Hugo Lloris (17e).
As in 2018
On the equalizing goal of the Croats, Brekalo, the Wolfsburg striker, did even better: alone in the middle of three Blues, after being thrown in depth, he managed to adjust a perfect shot (55e) synonymous with 2-2 on the Stade de France scoreboard.
But as in 2018 in Moscow, the match ended with a 4-2 for the Blues, because Dayot Upamecano, the young central defender of RB Leipzig (21 years old) celebrated his 2e selection by a header (65e), then because Olivier Giroud, from a penalty (77e), reached the milestone of 40 national goals.
The icing on the cake, Eduardo Camavinga made his debut for Blue at the end of the match at 17, and did not seem impressed. He played fair, simple and easy, as if he were at home, at Roazhon Park in Rennes. The midfielder became at exactly 17 years, 9 months and 29 days the first minor player to wear the jersey of the France team in over 100 years.
Ronaldo celebrates his 100e goal
In the other match of this group 3, Portugal, winner last year of the first edition of the League of Nations, found their road captain, Cristiano Ronaldo, cured of his infection in one toe, and has well. profited.
“CR7” indeed opened the scoring from a free kick (45e+1) and therefore marked his 100e goal for the Portuguese selection, against Sweden. Then the 101e, in the wake (72e), just to remember who is the boss.
In Group 2, the rejuvenated England failed to beat Denmark (0-0). In the other match, Belgium continued their health walk by dominating Iceland (5-1) thanks to a goal from Witsel (13e), a double from Batshuayi (17e, 69e), a pawn of the inevitable Dries Mertens (50e) and a youngest of Doku (80e), for the road.
League of Nations: the program of the Blues
Saturday September 5 at 8:45 p.m .: Sweden-France (in Solna)
Tuesday September 8 at 8:45 p.m .: France-Croatia (in Saint-Denis)
Sunday October 11 at 8:45 p.m .: France-Portugal (in Saint-Denis)
Wednesday October 14 at 8:45 p.m .: Croatia-France (in Zagreb)
Saturday 14 November at 8:45 p.m .: Portugal-France (stadium to be determined)
Tuesday November 17 at 8:45 p.m .: France-Sweden (stage to be determined)