Mbappe scores on return from broken nose and France draw 1-1 with Poland at Euro 2024

AP , Tuesday 25 Jun 2024

Kylian Mbappé scored from the penalty spot on his return after breaking his nose before France conceded a spot kick by Robert Lewandowski in a 1-1 draw with Poland at the European Championship on Tuesday.

France s forward #10 Kylian Mbappe, wearing a protective mask, gestures during the UEFA Euro 2024 Gr
France s forward #10 Kylian Mbappe, wearing a protective mask, gestures during the UEFA Euro 2024 Group D football match between France and Poland at the BVB Stadion in Dortmund on June 25, 2024. AFP

 

Mbappé removed his protective mask to celebrate in front of France’s fans after converting his 56th-minute penalty for his first goal at a European Championship. It wasn’t enough to secure his team first place in Group D at Euro 2024, though.

Lewandowski had his penalty saved in the 77th minute by France goalkeeper Mike Maignan, who was adjudged to have come off his line. The Poland striker found the bottom corner with his second attempt.

France finished as runner-up to Austria in the group and will play the runner-up in Group E, which could be Belgium, Romania, Slovakia or Ukraine, in the last 16 on July 1.

France has yet to score an open-play goal at Euro 2024, having beaten Austria 1-0 on an own-goal and then drawn 0-0 with the Netherlands — when Mbappé was missing after breaking his nose against the Austrians.

Mbappé returned to the starting lineup against last-place Poland, which was already eliminated before the match began, and was clearly impaired by wearing a mask that limits his peripheral vision.

He largely kept away from overly physical challenges and didn't compete for the ball in the air.

Still, Mbappé remained France's most dangerous attacker and finally got his first goal in six matches at the tournament — taking in four at Euro 2020 and two at Euro 2024 — after Ousmane Dembele was tripped in the area.

Mbappé played the full game, starting as a central striker before ending up on the left wing, in another unconvincing display from France — a two-time European champion and the World Cup runner-up in 2022.

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