Spain Edges Past France to Reach Euro 2024 Final

Source: Euro 2024

Lamine Yamal stole the show with a wonder goal as Spain overcame France 2-1 to secure their place in the Euro 2024 final. This marks their first appearance in the championship game since 2012.

Spanish coach Luis De La Fuente was forced to make changes to his starting lineup due to suspensions for Dani Carvajal and Robin Le Normand, as well as an injury to Pedri. Jesus Navas and Nacho filled the defensive gaps, while Dani Olmo stepped into midfield. Despite these alterations, Spain tactically outclassed their French counterparts under the guidance of Didier Deschamps.

France struck first in the 9th minute, with Randal Kolo Muani heading home a precise cross from Kylian Mbappe. This marked France’s first goal from open play in the entire tournament.

However, the lead was short-lived. Just 13 minutes later, Spain’s young star Lamine Yamal unleashed a stunning curling shot that found the top left corner from outside the box, drawing Spain level.

Things went from bad to worse for France as Dani Olmo doubled Spain’s lead shortly after 4 minutes. Jesus Navas delivered a dangerous cross into the French box, which found Olmo after a deflection from a French defender. The Spaniard displayed impressive skill to weave past his defender and fire a shot towards goal. Jules Kounde attempted a block, but the deflection sent the ball past his own goalkeeper. Initially awarded as an own goal, the decision was later changed to credit Olmo with the strike.

The second half saw a more aggressive French side emerge. They managed to breach the Spanish backline on several occasions, but Unai Simon in the Spanish goal remained largely untroubled.

France brought on Eduardo Camavinga, Antoine Griezmann, and Bradley Barcola in an attempt to change the tide, substituting Kolo Muani, N’Golo Kante, and Adrien Rabiot. This increased their attacking tempo, but Spain remained composed despite another setback – Jesus Navas being forced off with cramp who was replaced by Daniel Vivian.

Yamal nearly replicated his wonder goal in the 80th minute, but his effort sailed inches over the bar. Minutes later, Kylian Mbappe, finally free of his protective mask, had a chance of his own. He burst forward from midfield but mirrored Yamal’s miss, with his shot flying just over the Spanish crossbar.

Mbappe, who struggled throughout the tournament, could only manage an assist and failed to convert several promising opportunities inside the box. This forgettable campaign for the French talisman saw him finish with just one goal in five games.