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The Deja Vu of France and Croatia | UEFA Nations League

The UEFA Nations League is currently under way. Viewers are being greeted with amazing matches everyday. Of all these matches, the France Vs Croatia match stood out as it brought back the memories of the 2018 WC Final. There was an uncanny resemblance in the score board as well (4-2).

The FIFA World Cup Final of 2018 ( Image Courtesy : Twitter.com )

Croatia scored an own goal then, it scored an own goal now. Griezmann was on the scoresheet both the times. France as usual was being led by the charismatic erstwhile player turned manager Didier Deschamps. But, a lot has changed for both the teams since that glorious night of 2018. Yesterday’s UEFA Nations League match was a witness to that. Croatia is on the verge of going back to oblivion. It now seems to be a shadow of its former self.

Game Analysis :

Croatia had Mandzukic, Modric and Rakitic not playing in the XI, they seemed to be without a soul. Not that France was too different. Both the teams were far from their best. Going purely by stats, Croatia was far better. Croatia dominated the ball possession (56.7%) Vs France’s (43.3%). It also won more duels throughout the match and had a much better pass accuracy of 86% compared to France’s 80%. Croatia’s defense did an excellent job at times with Dejan Lovren leading from the front. Lovren also scored a spectacular goal in the first half from close range.

Lovren of Croatia celebrating his goal against France in the UEFA Nations League
Lovren of Croatia celebrating his goal against France in the UNL ( Image Coutesy : UEFA Nations League Twitter )

However much was left to be done in attack department. Josip Brekalo scored a goal from a Kovacic pass, cutting through 3 defenders alone. But there weren’t many opportunities or shots on target either. On the other hand, France created some great opportunities in attack but had a lot of defense woes. Upamecano and Camavinga looked promising. Griezmann was at his best. Of the four goals scored, only two goals were genuine.

Pogba and Mbappe, who are currently out with Covid-19, were dearly missed by France. Towards the end, there was a controversy regarding a penalty which led to Lovren and Brozovic being booked after getting into a heated argument with the referee. Giroud as usual, converted the penalty smoothly putting the final nail in the coffin.

Giroud scored a late penalty for France to seal the victory ( Image Courtesy : Twitter.com )

With Croatia’s home game against France in the UEFA Nations League still remaining, let’s see whether Croatia can get its sweet revenge. We cannot wait for its second installment.

Also Read: WSL Matchweek 1 Roundup: Chelsea held by Man United while Arsenal off the mark with six

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