Tops and Flops
Benzema clears the debt
We had been waiting for him since his return to the Blues, and the scorer’s instinct was awakened at the right time, in this third match which sends France in a strong position in the round of 16. If we didn’t see him much in the first half, he took the very big responsibility of taking the penalty from the equalizer at 1-1, when he had already missed one in a friendly against Wales. This time, he didn’t tremble, and freed himself even more in the second half, scoring a brace, with a nice cross shot, on a deep pass from a very good Paul Pogba.
The Blues go first
After the qualification objective, reached on Monday evening in front of the TV, the Blues took up the challenge of first place in a very compact and very difficult group. If they did not win for the second time in a row, they were able to keep control, not without having experienced great difficulty entering the match. If the meeting became quite crazy in the second half, the first was sluggish and dull. The suspense was constant between Budapest, where Portugal – France (2-2) was playing, and Munich, where Germany narrowly came out against Hungary (2-2).
But with this first place, the Blues have a rather favorable picture, since they will face Switzerland, Monday, June 28 in Bucharest. In case of qualification, they will face the winner of Croatia – Spain, in the quarter-finals on July 2 in Saint Petersburg.
Pogba and Kanté had legs
Despite the heat, for this third match in nine days, the two inseparable midfielders of the France team, Paul Pogba and N’Golo Kanté, did a lot of work in both recovery and recovery. In this area, it is Pogba who has again carved out the lion’s share with very good deep passes, including one transformed by Benzema.
Lloris lacking control
Once is not custom, Hugo Lloris cost a goal to his team, by badly controlling his output in the fist, on a free kick from Moutinho. While boxing the ball, he struck Danilo, who fell heavily. Card, penalty and goal for Ronaldo, who finally scored against the Blues, and who even doubled the stake on a second penalty. He didn’t have much to do otherwise.
Corridors in difficulty
Didier Deschamps had innovated by deciding to return to 4-2-3-1, in particular to allow Griezmann to have more benchmarks in his preferred position. But this 4-2-3-1 appeared frumpy with a right-back who is not one, Jules Koundé, who also conceded a penalty, and a right midfielder, Corentin Tolisso, unaccustomed to finding himself also eccentric.
On the left, it didn’t work out much better with Hernandez in trouble too quickly, and replaced at half-time by Digne… who was injured after six minutes. But the newcomer, Adrien Rabiot, got used to this unusual position. A little higher, Mbappé could not make much difference, but he got a penalty …