UEFA Nations League - Final
SpainSpain1FranceFrance2

France beat Spain to become second Nations League winners

By Mantej MannBBC Sport
Kylian Mbappe
Kylian Mbappe stayed onside to score the winner in the Nations League final

Kylian Mbappe fired a contentious winner as France came from behind to beat Spain and become the second team to win the Nations League.

Mbappe was adjudged to be onside when he slid the ball under Unai Simon after Karim Benzema's stunning equaliser at Milan's San Siro.

Spain had taken the lead through Mikel Oyarzabal, who shrugged off defender Dayot Upamecano to beat Hugo Lloris.

Lloris produced two late saves to ensure victory for the world champions.

He first denied Oyarzabal before acrobatically keeping out Yeremi Pino's effort in stoppage time, as France became the competition's second winners after Portugal in 2019.

But Mbappe's winner will prove to be a moment of debate, with the goal standing even though the Paris St-Germain striker was in an offside position when Theo Hernandez played the initial through ball.

Spain defender Eric Garcia touched the ball in his attempt to clear the danger before it came to Mbappe, and the rules state "a player in an offside position receiving the ball from an opponent who deliberately plays the ball... is not considered to have gained an advantage".

France, who reached the final by coming from 2-0 down to beat neighbours Belgium 3-2 on Thursday, had to fight back again and did so in a game that came alive after an hour of technical but sedate action.

Didier Deschamps' side's resilience was on full display again as Benzema cut in on his right foot to curl the ball over Simon, less than two minutes after Oyarzabal's opener for Spain.

And even though France had less possession (36%), they constantly looked a threat on the counter-attack as Mbappe struck the decisive - and perhaps fortunate - blow.

Benzema, who returned to the international fold before Euro 2020 in the summer, told French television channel M6: "I really wanted to win a trophy with France, and now it's done.

"We showed strength of character, because this team is very strong, never gives up and we have proven it today.

"It is the sign of a great team not to panic, to be patient and to wait for the right opportunity."

Line-ups

Spain

Formation 4-3-3

  • 23Simón
  • 2Azpilicueta
  • 12García
  • 19LaporteBooked at 86mins
  • 17Alonso
  • 9Paez GaviriaSubstituted forKokeat 75'minutes
  • 5Busquets
  • 16RodriSubstituted forFornalsat 84'minutes
  • 11TorresSubstituted forMerinoat 84'minutes
  • 21Oyarzabal
  • 22SarabiaSubstituted forPinoat 61'minutes

Substitutes

  • 1de Gea
  • 3Torres
  • 4Martínez
  • 6Gil
  • 7Pino
  • 8Koke
  • 10Roberto
  • 13Sánchez
  • 14Reguilón
  • 15Porro
  • 18Fornals
  • 20Merino

France

Formation 3-4-1-2

  • 1Lloris
  • 5KoundéBooked at 55mins
  • 4VaraneSubstituted forUpamecanoat 43'minutes
  • 3Kimpembe
  • 2PavardSubstituted forDuboisat 79'minutes
  • 8Tchouaméni
  • 6PogbaBooked at 46mins
  • 22Hernández
  • 7GriezmannSubstituted forVeretoutat 90+2'minutes
  • 10MbappéBooked at 89mins
  • 19Benzema

Substitutes

  • 9Martial
  • 11Diaby
  • 12Dubois
  • 13Guendouzi
  • 15Upamecano
  • 16Costil
  • 17Veretout
  • 20Ben Yedder
  • 21Hernández
  • 23Maignan
Referee:
Anthony Taylor
Attendance:
31,511

Match Stats

Home TeamSpainAway TeamFrance
Possession
Home64%
Away36%
Shots
Home12
Away12
Shots on Target
Home4
Away5
Corners
Home7
Away5
Fouls
Home11
Away14

Live Text

  1. Post update

    Match ends, Spain 1, France 2.

  2. Full Time

    Second Half ends, Spain 1, France 2.

  3. Post update

    Attempt blocked. Sergio Busquets (Spain) header from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Yeremi Pino with a cross.

  4. Post update

    Corner, Spain. Conceded by Karim Benzema.

  5. Post update

    Attempt saved. Yeremi Pino (Spain) left footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal.

  6. Post update

    Corner, Spain. Conceded by Paul Pogba.

  7. Post update

    Attempt missed. Mikel Merino (Spain) header from the centre of the box misses to the left. Assisted by César Azpilicueta with a cross.

  8. Substitution

    Substitution, France. Jordan Veretout replaces Antoine Griezmann.

  9. Post update

    Attempt blocked. Pablo Fornals (Spain) right footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Koke.

  10. Booking

    Kylian Mbappé (France) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

  11. Post update

    Yeremi Pino (Spain) wins a free kick on the right wing.

  12. Post update

    Foul by Kylian Mbappé (France).

  13. Post update

    Attempt saved. Kylian Mbappé (France) right footed shot from the right side of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Karim Benzema.

  14. Post update

    César Azpilicueta (Spain) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  15. Post update

    Foul by Karim Benzema (France).

  16. Post update

    Attempt saved. Mikel Oyarzabal (Spain) left footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Marcos Alonso.

  17. Post update

    Attempt missed. Antoine Griezmann (France) left footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the left. Assisted by Paul Pogba following a set piece situation.

  18. Booking

    Aymeric Laporte (Spain) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

  19. Post update

    Foul by Aymeric Laporte (Spain).

  20. Post update

    Léo Dubois (France) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

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