Portugal 0 France 1 – Lisbon N’golo Kante’s lone goal sends Les Bleus to the finals
UEFA Nations League Group A3 report – Portugal vs. France – Saturday, 14 November 2020 – Matchday 5 of 6 report
Result: Portugal 0 France 1 – Estádio do SL Benfica – Lisbon
Portugal suffered a rare defeat as they went down 0-1 to France at Lisbon in a Group A3 encounter that saw the latter reach the finals. N-golo Kante, back in the starting XI scored the lone winner for the visitors in the second-half.
The French side who have won 15 of their last 19 outings were dominant as Antoine Griezmann set up Anthony Martial’s first opportunity in the 12th minute with a sliding pass but Portuguese goalkeeper Rui Patricio blocked the latter’s attempt at point-blank range.
Martial had two more chances when he diverted a header off an Adrien Rabiot’s effort onto the bar and saw another attempt from Lucas Hernandez’s cross brilliantly saved at close quarters by Patricio.
The French finally got the breakthrough they wanted in the 53rd minute when Griezmann essayed a through ball to Rabiot whose shot was parried by Patricio only to be pounced upon and scored off on the rebound by an opportunistic Kante.
The hosts tried to make a comeback but saw three of their chances go abegging. A Jose Fonte header hit the post. A long-range effort from Joao Moutinho that seemed to be curling into the top corner was saved spectacularly by Lloris lunging to his right and parring the ball away.
A Moutinho cross then eluded the French back-line completely as it passed in front of an empty goal with no one to rush in and finish. But the French hung on to earn a well-deserved win and move to the top of Group A3 with one game remaining.
Rui Patrício (goal); João Cancelo, Fonte, Rúben Dias, Guerreiro; Danilo (Sérgio Oliveira 84), Bruno Fernandes (João Moutinho 72), William Carvalho (Diogo Jota 56); João Félix (Paulinho 84), Ronaldo, Bernardo Silva (Francisco Trincão 72)
Lloris (goal); Pavard, Varane, Kimpembe, Hernández; Rabiot, Kante, Pogba; Coman (Thuram 59), Martial (Giroud 78), Griezmann
Didier Deschamp’s France who are now into the final four have their last Group tie at home against Sweden which is a mere formality.
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