France Defeats Spain, Wins UEFA Nations League Titleby Alex Al-Kazzaz October 11, 2021 0 comments
France has achieved redemption. Les Bleus are the new UEFA Nations League champions. Winning the Nations League not only adds another major title to the trophy case, but it soothes the pain from their dreadful performance at Euro 2020 last summer. Les Bleus should be proud as the odds were not in their favor to win the Nations League title this year.
The French National Team really did make a great impression in winning the title. In the semifinals against Belgium, France overcame a 2-0 halftime deficit, going on to win 3-2, courtesy of goals from Kylian Mbappé, Karim Benzema, and Theo Hernàndez. In the final against Spain, France trailed 1-0 in the 64th minute only to equalize less than two minutes later courtesy of Benzema. Mbappé would score the game-winner in the 80th minute and Les Bleus would hold on for the win.
Nations League semifinal:
—France down 2-0 to Belgium
—Benzema and Mbappe score to tie the game
Nations League final:
—France down 1-0 to Spain
—Benzema and Mbappe score to take the lead
These two 🔥 pic.twitter.com/WDodyuAHMj
— B/R Football (@brfootball) October 10, 2021
The final against Spain was anything but easy for Les Bleus. Going against a young and talented Spanish team that dominates the midfield was not easy for France to overcome. Furthermore, going against a full-strength Belgian squad in the previous match was a brutal obstacle for France. Through teamwork, concentration, and resiliency, Les Bleus overcame every obstacle and defied all odds.
A Dose of Redemption
Lately, the national team’s leadership and management have been under a lot of criticism. Furthermore, the players’ behavior has been a major problem. It’s strongly suggested that arrogant behavior is the reason for their elimination at Euro 2020 and poor results as of late. However, it looked as though the squad all of a sudden had their act together. From the results against Belgium and Spain, it’s clear the players trusted each other while playing as a cohesive unit. Most importantly, it looked as though the squad replaced their arrogant behavior with a winning mentality. At any rate, they must retain a winning mentality at all costs.
Mbappé played a major role in helping France win the Nations League. It seems that he and Benzema are quite the dynamic duo. Mbappé provided the assists on each of Benzema’s two goals. In the semifinal, he converted a penalty to tie the score 2-2. Benzema would later reveal that he asked Mbappé to take the penalty because he wanted Mbappé to avenge his penalty miss that eliminated France at Euro 2020. With Mbappé scoring the game-winning goal in the final, the star achieved redemption in the best way possible.
Next month, France will wrap their 2022 World Cup qualification campaign. With two matches left to play, they must finish strong to keep the momentum high. France will play Kazakhstan at home on November 13 and Finland on the road three days later. Les Bleus have much to work on as they prepare to defend their title next year.
Follow Alex Al-Kazzaz on Twitter @BearManOfTX
Main Image Credit:
Embed from Getty Images