Mbappe shines as France secures Euro 2024 ticket alongside Portugal and Belgium
France secures early qualification for Euro 2024 with a 2-1 victory led by Kylian Mbappe, solidifying their dominance in Group B.
In a thrilling match, Kylian Mbappe led France to an early qualification for Euro 2024 with a stunning 2-1 victory against an injury-plagued Netherlands squad. This victory solidifies France's position as one of the first three teams to secure their spots in the upcoming tournament, showcasing their unwavering dominance in Group B with six consecutive wins.
Mbappe's performance was nothing short of mesmerizing, as he silenced his critics and reignited his scoring form with a brace. His exceptional display on the pitch was instrumental in France's journey to Euro 2024.
Joining France in the exclusive club of Euro 2024 qualifiers are Portugal and Belgium, who both secured their places with remarkable victories. These wins further solidify their presence on the grand European stage.
In Group J, Portugal showcased their power by triumphing in all their matches. Led by the ever-prolific Cristiano Ronaldo and Goncalo Ramos, they orchestrated a thrilling 3-2 win over Slovakia. Portugal's relentless commitment to success has earned them a well-deserved ticket to Euro 2024.
Belgium, on the other hand, wrote their own Euro 2024 saga with a dramatic 3-2 win against Austria in Group F. Dodi Lukebakio's sensational performance with two goals and Romelu Lukaku's sealing goal in the second half ensured Belgium's qualification while dashing Austria's hopes.
The game at the illustrious Johan Cruijff Arena saw France dominate proceedings for the majority of the match, despite goalkeeper Mike Maignan's rare lapses. It was Mbappe, who briefly left the training camp earlier in the week for personal reasons, who emerged as the hero. In the seventh minute, he volleyed home a brilliant goal, thanks to Jonathan Clauss's pinpoint cross, ending his frustrating four-game competitive goal drought.
Didier Deschamps, France's coach, offered reassuring words for Mbappe, stating, "He showed today there was nothing to worry about. When he's in this form, France has a greater chance of victory."
The 24-year-old forward continued to showcase his brilliance, scoring another goal eight minutes into the second half. Adrien Rabiot's clever assist set the stage for Mbappe to curl a sublime shot into the top corner from the edge of the box. This goal marked his 42nd international goal, surpassing the legendary Michel Platini and claiming the fourth spot on France's all-time top scorers list.
Despite their injuries, the Netherlands managed to break France's defense with Quilindschy Hartman's 83rd-minute goal. This was the first goal France conceded in their qualifying campaign, leaving midfielder Adrien Rabiot acknowledging, "We're aiming for perfection."
Greece also bolstered their qualifying hopes with a 2-0 victory against Ireland, securing second place in the group with 12 points, three points ahead of the Netherlands, who still have a game in hand.
As Euro 2024 rapidly approaches, France, a team with an unbroken European Championship record since 1988, is preparing for a friendly clash with Scotland. Meanwhile, the Netherlands will head to Greece for their next qualifier on Monday.