Spain and France Match Analysis Review (Spain Qualified)

The storylines were destined to be huge, and the headlines were always exciting: After dismantling Germany in the quarterfinals (2-1), Spain faced another major nation, France. The narratives were set, and the match did not disappoint – in fact, it exceeded expectations.

Every ninety minutes (or one hundred twenty) has its winner, and it took less than 70 minutes for Spain to convince Europe that it deserved to be the first qualified nation for the EURO 2024 final. Here’s how it all happened.

Early Setback for Spain with 9th Minute Goal

Spain was always the favourite. Since the beginning of the tournament, they have shown the most cohesive unit in all phases of play. Spain regularly outclasses their opponents and is patient enough to maintain short leads.

However, concerns mounted as the clash against Germany had its consequences: Pedri was injured in the 7th minute, and both Carvajal and Le Normand were suspended for the match against France.

This meant that half of the backline needed to be replaced. Le Normand was replaced by Nacho – who had already played the first game and turned out to be a disaster – while Jesus Navas filled in for Dani Carvajal.

Navas Struggles Against Mbappé’s Speed

While Nacho’s performance was more than respectable, fulfilling his role with quality, the concerns about Navas’ lack of pace were justified from the first minutes.

He knew, Spain knew, France knew. We all knew it was going to happen. Kylian Mbappé’s dynamic runs and 1v1 confrontations were always expected to spell disaster for Spain.

Jesus Navas is simply too slow to keep up with the Frenchman’s blistering pace, and that was the origin of the first goal. Kolo Muani scored in the 9th minute, capitalizing on Mbappé’s effort from the wing. It may sound simplistic, but football can indeed be that straightforward.

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