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World Cup 2022: France's Kylian Mbappé makes the World Cup his stage

2022-12-04T19:44:33.444Z


Not Cristiano Ronaldo, not even Lionel Messi – a 23-year-old is the biggest star at this World Cup: Kylian Mbappé. In the round of 16 against Poland, he had an assist and two spectacular goals.


Enlarge image

Kylian Mbappé leads the scorers list at the 2022 World Cup with five goals

Photo:

LEE SMITH / REUTERS

Player of the match:

The French almost fell behind in a sluggish first half.

Then Kylian Mbappé got through perfectly to Olivier Giroud and it was 1-0 at the break (44th minute).

With the lead behind them, France counterattacked, a perfectly suitable move for Mbappé, who decided the game with two wonderful shots.

One in the left corner (74th), one in the right (90th + 1), a goal prepared - the superstar from Paris Saint-Germain makes the World Cup his personal highlight show.

The result:

France reached the quarter-finals of the World Cup in Qatar with a 3-1 victory.

Here is the match report.

The first half:

France played casually, giving Poland a lot of space to build up the game.

And the Poles, who were criticized for their rough, defensive style of play, also used it.

A triple chance in the 38th minute was thwarted by France goalkeeper Hugo Lloris and centre-back Raphaël Varane with exploits on the line.

Then Les Bleus struck: Mbappé put through, Giroud scored from the turn to make it 1-0 (44th).

The record man:

Giroud's third goal of the tournament was the 52nd of his international career.

The 36-year-old is now the sole record holder in France, leaving storm icon Thierry Henry behind.

The pursuer:

As great as Giroud's performance is, his record will not last long.

Mbappé is just 23 years old and has already scored 31 goals with his two goals (74th, 90th + 1st).

Giroud scored for the national team for the first time when he was two years older than Mbappé today, who is fast closing the gap to the new record holder.

In the past 14 international matches, Mbappé has scored 16 times.

In this tournament he already has five goals (top value) and three assists in four games.

The second half:

The second round splashed along.

France risked little, Poland came up with even less.

Then the French countered via Ousmane Dembélé, who served Mbappé on the left.

The 23-year-old put the ball in place and slammed it into the short angle with his right, in injury time he followed up with a flick in the long angle before Robert Lewandowski used a hand penalty to make it 1: 3 (90 + 9) .

The hesitation:

It was an unworthy spectacle when Lewandowksi took the penalty.

After a hopping start, the 34-year-old delayed with a feint just before the shot to provoke Lloris to jump into a corner and then be able to choose the other.

Lloris also responded to the deception, but Lewandowski shot right into the corner of the keeper, who even held the ball.

However, the whole thing was repeated because Lloris left the goal line before the shot.

So the attacker performed the same trick again, this time the goalkeeper had no chance - and cursed afterwards about the interpretation of the rules.

The Veteran:

Still, Lloris had something to celebrate.

The Tottenham Hotspur keeper made his 142nd appearance for the Équipe Tricolore, level with record player Lilian Thuram.

After World Cup appearances, he also equaled the record (17) set by Henry and Fabien Barthez.

The 35-year-old made his debut 14 years ago and has been captain since 2012.

The jewel in midfield:

No top team at this World Cup has been so weakened by injuries as France.

In addition to other stars, the 2018 world champion duo in midfield, N'Golo Kanté and Paul Pogba, are missing.

In their absence, however, a new super talent emerges in Aurélien Tchouaméni.

The 22-year-old from Real Madrid is France's metronome, he can always be played in the centre, shifts the ball from side to side, usually more straightforwardly than playfully, and wins important duels.

A man for the future who is already indispensable in the present.

The jeweler in defence:

Midway through the first half, France right-back Jules Koundé fired a long-range shot.

During the massive movement, something flashed on his neck that, according to the dress code, had no place there: a gold chain.

Like a rascal, the Barça pro quickly put his jewelry back under his jersey and got away with it, at least for the time being.

The referee later confronted him and stopped the game so that Koundé could disguise himself (42').

This is how it goes on:

Poland, Denmark, Tunisia, Australia - these are not teams from the district league, but for the French world-class squad they are not opponents on an equal footing.

Such a threat threatens France in the quarter-finals: there could be a duel with England, who are the favorites in the evening game against Senegal (8 p.m., TV: Magenta).

Source: spiegel

All sports articles on 2022-12-04

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