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France boss Deschamps confirms Mbappé role for Netherlands clash at Euro 2024

By Paul Myers - RFI
France AP - Hassan Ammar
FRI, 21 JUN 2024 LISTEN
AP - Hassan Ammar

France boss Didier Deschamps confirmed that skipper Kylian Mbappé will feature in the squad for the second game in Group D at Euro 2024 against the Netherlands on Friday night despite a broken nose.

Mbappé, 25, trained with the rest of his teammates on Thursday wearing a red, white and blueface mask to cover his nose which was fractured in a collision with Austria defender Kevin Danso on Monday night during France's opening game at the tournament.

In the immediate aftermath of the clash at the Düsseldorf Arena, it was feared Mbappé would miss the rest of the competition. But preliminary examinations at the city's university hospital revealed the injury did not require immediate surgery.

“Everything is going well, after the shock we had," said Deschamps in the prelude to the game in Leipzig.

"Everything is evolving in the right direction. We'll do all we can to ensure that he'll be available.

"Kylian will be wearing a mask,” Deschamps added.
Mbappé, who will start his career at Real Madrid in August, downplayed the severity of the injury.

On Monday, he took to social media to ask for suggestions for designs and in the run-up to the match against the Netherlands, he posted on social media: “Without risks, there are no victories.” 

It is believed that Deschamps will not risk his star striker at the start of the game and will push Antoine Griezmann into the front line alongside Ousmane Dembélé and Marcus Thuram and bring in Aurélien Tchouaméni into the midfield to support Adrien Rabiot and N'Golo Kanté, who was deemed man-of-the-match in the 1-0 win against Austria.

“France is such a strong team, that even if Mbappé is not playing, the substitute will be a great player as well," said Netherlands boss Ronald Koeman.

Challenge

"All we can do is try to influence our team and prepare ourselves as best as we can, the 61-year-old added. "Not everything depends on whether Mbappé is there or not."

However, recent history suggests that the Netherlands side would rejoice in Mbappé's absence

The striker bagged a brace and set up another goal as France annihilated the Netherlands 4-0 at home in March 2023 during the qualifying campaign for Euro 2024.

Mbappé also scored both goals as France defeated Koeman's team 2-1 in Amsterdam.

"He had a big influence on the last two qualification games," Koeman deadpanned.

The Netherlands, who opened their Euro 2024 with a 2-1 victory over Poland in Hamburg, are seeking a first European championships title since a team featuring Koeman, Ruud Gullit and Marco van Basten swept to glory in 1988.

"We've got players who are all in good shape," said Koeman.

"This game will be a challenge. The France team has been playing together for a long time and has played more international matches together than we have.

"But the win against Poland give us a bit of breathing space."

Victory for either side would ensure qualification for the last-16 knockout stages at least as one of the four best third-placed teams.

“I remember our solidity and our ability to make the differences in attack when we last played them," said Rabiot.

"We knew how to be efficient and we'll need to do that again. We'll have to have the same intensity as we did against Austria. It's an essential ingredient to go as far as possible in this competition."

Which team do you think has the higher chance of winning the 2024 elections?

Started: 02-07-2024 | Ends: 31-10-2024

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