Berlin (dpa/Stats Perform)
France coach Didier Deschamps said the sadness Antoine Griezmann felt after Kylian Mbappé snubbed him for the captaincy “lasted just two minutes”.
Mbappé needed less than two minutes to score Griezmann’s opening goal in France’s 4-0 win over the Netherlands to give France a strong start in Euro 2024 qualifying.
Deschamps said Mbappé, who scored twice after Dayo Upamecano’s goal, was the team’s new captain before Griezmann but assured at a post-match news conference that there was no problem between them.
“Fortunately, I don’t know what was said and what was written,” he said. The two get along well, train well and have the same goal of performing well for the French national team.
He added: “Antoine’s frustration lasted two minutes. It’s not the slightest problem, just like the band as a whole. They all caused a positive reaction.”
Mbappé completed France’s goal in the 88th minute, although the Netherlands won from the penalty spot, but Memphis Depay’s shot was saved by Mike Meenan.
As Mbappé wrested the bracelet from retiring Hugo Lloris, Manny was playing his first game since being confirmed as France’s starter in Lloris’s place, and Deschamps had no doubts about the decision.
“This is Mike,” Deschamps said. He didn’t need to ask me questions. He was injured, but the goalkeeper’s skill and mentality… the confidence is total. He did well. Mike has what it takes to become a first choice goalkeeper.
France went three goals up after just 21 minutes, the first time France had gone two goals up since December 1953, when they defeated Luxembourg 8-0. Goals in the first ten minutes. Deschamps also said there could be changes for Monday’s second Group B game against Ireland, adding: “It will be another battle for us.”
Source: Al Ittihad
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