A screamer from Benjamin Pavard noticed France declare a resilient 1-0 victory over the Republic of Eire in Euro 2024 qualifying on Monday evening.
The Irish beat Latvia 3-2 in a current pleasant however could not drive an equaliser towards the French as their bid to succeed in a primary European Championship since 2016 began with defeat on the Aviva Stadium.
It is two wins from two video games for brand spanking new captain Kylian Mbappe and France, who’ve taken an early grip on Group B.
Randal Kolo Muani, who has scored 11 Bundesliga objectives for Eintracht Frankfurt this season, rounded Gavin Bazunu early on and located Olivier Giroud, however the veteran striker was shortly surrounded by Irish defenders who ultimately cleared to security.
It was a narrative of gradual build-up from France towards the stoic work ethic of the Boys in Inexperienced, and the hosts saved the World Cup finalists comfortably at bay within the opening levels. Pavard’s yellow card halfway via the primary half was the primary blatant signal of Les Bleus’ rising frustration.
Eire confirmed sparks of attacking risk, with Josh Cullen delivering some harmful crosses and Chiedozie Ogbene’s willpower incomes applause from the gang.
Nevertheless, whereas the hosts stunted France’s passing sample, they might solely handle one shot within the first half and a thunderbolt early within the second interval noticed Didier Deschamps’ facet take the lead.
Cullen could not clear his traces successfully and Pavard picked up possession and struck a fearsome effort from the sting of the field which fizzed previous Bazunu into the roof of the web.
It was a lead scarcely deserved for Les Bleus however they began to look extra authoritative on the ball after going 1-0 up and Bazunu was wanted to stop substitute Moussa Diaby curling into the far nook.
The Southampton stopper was quickly known as into motion once more, holding out a pointy drive from Adrien Rabiot, earlier than supervisor Stephen Kenny rang the modifications for the ultimate quarter-hour.
Eire managed some sturdy durations of stress late on and it was nearly siege-like when Nathan Collins noticed his header from a nook remarkably clawed away from security by the spectacular Mike Maignan. That was the ultimate main probability earlier than the full-time whistle.
A second win in qualifying places France three factors clear on the prime of Group B, with Eire in fourth above Gibraltar on objective distinction.
GK: Gavin Bazunu – 6/10 – Made a few good stops to cease France charging right into a extra dominant lead.
CB: Nathan Collins – 6/10 – Regarded like he’d seen a ghost after watching Maignan save his late header. Did not do an excessive amount of unsuitable in defence.
CB: John Egan – 7/10 – Booked late on for a collision. Led Eire’s defensive effort with three blocks and clearances apiece.
CB: Dara O’Shea – 6/10 – Had one shot blocked in a promising place. Wished a penalty for a tussle with Muani however received nothing.
RWB: Seamus Coleman – 7/10 – Contemplating he is lengthy within the tooth at this level, 34-year-old Coleman handled the specter of Mbappe neatly.
CM: Jayson Molumby – 6/10 – Made some dogged challenges in midfield and solely misplaced three of his 34 passes. Not that artistic, thoughts.
CM: Josh Cullen – 5/10 – Set items appeared harmful however simply could not discover their targets. Gave the ball away to Pavard earlier than the defender’s objective.
LWB: Matt Doherty – 6/10 – Did provide a few storming runs down the left and recovered the ball 5 occasions.
RF: Chiedozie Ogbene – 6/10 – Did not get an opportunity to shoot at objective however his work price was cheered on noticeably by the Aviva crowd.
LF: Jason Knight – 5/10 – Helped Eire clog up midfield however each of his photographs on objective had been blocked.
ST: Evan Ferguson – 6/10 – Held up the ball properly every now and then to present Eire a platform however his affect wained and he got here off simply after the hour.
Adam Idah (65′ for Ferguson) – 5/10
James McClean (77′ for Doherty) – 6/10
Mikey Johnston (77′ for Knight) – 6/10
Alan Browne (78′ for O’Shea) – 6/10
Michael Obafemi (86′ for Molumby) – N/A
Stephen Kenny – 7/10 – Eire was organised in defence and appeared snug at factors. They had been denied what would have been a well-earned level late on, however this show is promising.
GK: Mike Maignan – 8/10 – Made two massive stops late on to cease Eire claiming a degree. Instantly proving his price as Les Bleus’ new primary.
RB: Benjamin Pavard – 8/10 – Picked up a reserving within the first half however picked up the free ball and smacked in the one objective of the sport simply after the break. An enormous efficiency in his first nationwide workforce look because the World Cup conflict with Australia.
CB: Ibrahima Konate – 7/10 – Noticed loads of the ball and was hardly ever crushed one-v-one.
CB: Dayot Upamecano – 7/10 – Ceaselessly handed France into the ultimate third and snuffed out Eire’s assaults with a few blocks.
LB: Theo Hernandez – 6/10 – Charged up the left in assault however simply did not get the ultimate ball proper.
CM: Antoine Griezmann – 7/10 – Helped France experience out some powerful passages of Irish stress and created a few possibilities in assault.
CM: Eduardo Camavinga – 7/10 – Performed some pretty incisive passes early on and was consistently choosing up free possession.
CM: Adrien Rabiot – 7/10 – Did not provide the objective risk he has at Juventus not too long ago however was industrious throughout the pitch and good within the air.
RW: Randal Kolo Muani – 6/10 – Virtually arrange Giroud early on however was typically stopped when dribbling earlier than he might hit prime gear.
ST: Olivier Giroud – 6/10 – Had a few half-chances however issues did not fall for him.
LW: Kylian Mbappe – 7/10 – Confirmed that fearsome drive into the field in assault however France’s passing spluttered all through and Mbappe’s alternatives suffered consequently,
Moussa Diaby (65′ for Giroud) – 6/10
Jules Kounde (81′ for Pavard) – N/A
Aurelien Tchouameni (81′ for Rabiot) – N/A
Marcus Thuram (90′ for Muani) – N/A
Didier Deschamps – 6/10 – France by no means received the second objective they wanted to really kill the sport off and had been indebted to Maignan on the full-time whistle. Deschamps will focusing on main enhancements of their subsequent outing.