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Yamal makes history as Spain sink France to reach Euro 2024 final

todayJuly 10, 2024 4

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Lamine Yamal, 16, became the tournament’s youngest ever goalscorer as Spain came back to beat France 2-1 in Munich on Tuesday and reach the Euro 2024 final.

Trailing after Randal Kolo Muani headed in a Kylian Mbappe cross in the ninth minute, Spain turned the match around in a four-minute period, scoring twice against a side who had only conceded once in five previous games in this tournament.

Yamal, who turns 17 a day before Sunday’s final against either the Netherlands or England in Berlin, equalised with a superb strike from outside the box, curling a long-range effort into the top corner and past the fingertips of an airborne Mike Maignan.

Spain took the lead on 25 minutes, Dani Olmo expertly gathering a loose ball and firing a low shot into the net with the aid of a deflection off Jules Kounde.

“I got the ball, didn’t think about it for too long and just shot,” Yamal said of his brilliant strike. “I’m just enjoying myself and I’m proud to be in the final.”

Three-time champions Spain became the first team to win six games at a Euros and are one game away from a record-breaking fourth crown.

“We are one step away from glory,” Olmo told ZDF. “We are very, very close. This team is unbelievable. We deserve it.”

This weekend in Berlin will be Spain’s first appearance in a major tournament final since a much-vaunted side thrashed Italy 4-0 in the Euro 2012 showpiece.

Masters of midfield game management, Spain shut up shop after taking the lead, frequently holding possession rather than attack on the counter, controlling the match and claiming the win.

“They’re a very good team, we knew that, they proved it tonight even if we were able to open the scoring,” France coach Didier Deschamps.

“They created difficulties for us as they controlled the game better than us, even if we kept going until the end.”

Finalists in three of the past four major tournaments, questions will be asked of how France failed to click up front despite boasting enviable attacking riches.

Mbappe again struggled to make a serious impact despite playing without the mask he had been wearing since breaking his nose in France’s opening game against Austria.

The Real Madrid-bound striker’s only goal in nine career appearances at the Euros remains the penalty he netted in the 1-1 group-stage draw with Poland last month.

France had scored just three goals in Germany heading into the match, none of which were scored by a French player from open play and Deschamps reacted, benching forward Antoine Griezmann for Ousmane Dembele.

Yamal created the first chance of the match four minutes in, lofting a curling cross to an unmarked Fabian Ruiz, who headed over from point-blank range.

Four minutes later, Mbappe skated down the left flank and sent in a carbon copy of Yamal’s cross, but Kolo Muani’s header was on target to give France the lead.



Written by: Staff Writer

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