UEFA Nations League results: France defeats Croatia 4-2

St Denis

French won the drama six goals cons Croatia. Coming from behind first, Les Bleus won with a score of 4-2.

In continued UEFA Nations League League 1 Group C in Saint-Denis, Wednesday (9/9/2020) early morning WIB, France and Croatia met again after last in the 2018 World Cup final. France, who appeared without Kylian Mbappe, is still too tough for Croatia.

Although left behind through Dejan Lovren’s goal, France turned 2-1 ahead at the end of the first half through Antoine Griezmann and Dominik Lovakovic’s suicide. Croatia equalized again early in the second half through Josip Brekalo.

However, France was able to add two more goals through Dayot Upamecano and Olivier Giroud’s penalty. An additional three points to make France sit in second place with six points, behind Portugal, which is superior on goal difference. Croatia at the bottom with zero points.

The course of the match

Croatia appeared to be a surprise when they took the lead in the 16th minute. Starting from a Marcelo Brozovic corner, the ball goes to Dejan Lovren who receives with his right foot then outlasts the French defender before hitting the ball into the net with his left.

The goal made France even more eager to attack the Croatian defense. The visitors even had a chance through Brozovic in the 27th minute but Hugo Lloris’s shot was saved.

In the 33rd minute Antoine Griezmann opted to dribble on his own and finish with a hard shot, even though Anthony Martial was free. However, the ball can be pushed over by Dominik Livakovic.

France finally equalized two minutes before the break. Martial attacked from the left and thrust the ball at Benjamin Mendy. Mendy quickly made a pass to Wissam Ben Yedder who turned to Martial.

UEFA Nations League results: France Freeze Croatia 4-2 Photo: AP / Francois Mori

Martial then handed it to Griezmann, who easily cheated it against Croatia. France then turned 2-1 ahead when Martial cheated the ball in the 45th minute which actually hit the post, but instead went into the net after hitting Livakovic’s body.

France's Anthony Martial celebrates after scoring during a UEFA Nations League soccer match against Croatia at the Stade de France stadium in Saint-Denis, north of Paris, France, Tuesday, Sept. 8, 2020. (AP Photo/Francois Mori)UEFA Nations League results: France Freeze Croatia 4-2 Photo: AP / Francois Mori

In the second half, Croatia tried to catch up. The result was in the 55th minute, it was Josip Brekalo who dribbled past Mendy with ease, before entering the penalty area and finishing with a flick into the corner of Lloris’ goal.

The match heats up because the two teams are both eager to add goals after the score drew 2-2. France got the lead in the 65th minute when Dayot Upamecano headed home Griezmann’s corner.

France's Dayot Upamecano scores during a UEFA Nations League soccer match against Croatia at the Stade de France stadium in Saint-Denis, north of Paris, France, Tuesday, Sept. 8, 2020. (AP Photo/Francois Mori)UEFA Nations League results: France Freeze Croatia 4-2 Photo: AP / Francois Mori

In the 71st minute, Griezmann shot a powerful ball into the net which Livakovic struggled to brush off. Three minutes later Martial, who was left facing the goalkeeper, failed because his shot was pushed over.

France was awarded a penalty in the 76th minute following a Brozovic handball on a cross. The Croatian player strongly protested the referee’s decision which resulted in two yellow cards and a penalty that Giroud successfully executed to change the score to 4-2.

France's Olivier Giroud scores a penalty shoot during a UEFA Nations League soccer match against Croatia at the Stade de France stadium in Saint-Denis, north of Paris, France, Tuesday, Sept. 8, 2020. (AP Photo/Francois Mori)UEFA Nations League results: France Freeze Croatia 4-2 Photo: AP / Francois Mori

Croatia almost got a third in the 89th minute if Domagoj Vida’s header didn’t hit the post. Until the match ended, no additional goals were scored.

Line-up of players

Prancis: Hugo Lloris; Dayot Upamecano, Clement Lenglet, Lucas Hernandez; Moussa Sissoko, N’Golo Kante (Eduardo Camavinga 63 ‘), Steven Nzonzi, Ferland Mendy; Antoine Griezmann (Nabil Fekir 78 ‘), Wissam Ben Yedder (Olivier Giroud 63’), Anthony Martial.

Croatia: Dominik Livakovic; Filip Uremovic (Domagoj Vida 57 ‘), Duje Caleta-Car, Dejan Lovren, Dario Melnjak; Mateo Kovacic, Marcelo Brozovic, Nikola Vlasic; Ante Rebic (Josep Brekalo 45 ‘), Andrej Kramaric, Ivan Perisic (Mario Pasalic 66’).

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