Nations LeagueCroatia and France ended their second match in this Nations League tonight with a 1-1 draw. Adrien Rabiot and substitute Andrej Kramaric scored in the second half in the atmospheric Poljud Stadium in Split, where Karim Benzema and Kylian Mbappé watched Luka Modric’s 150th international match from the bench.
The match was all about rehabilitation for both countries. The two top countries had to work in the repeat of the 2018 World Cup final after their slips on Friday evening at the start of the third Nations League. Croatia then lost 0-3 to Austria and France was put on display by Denmark in the Stade de France: 1-2.
Croatia and France are therefore on one point after two matches, although the players will attach little value to this after a long season at their clubs. French national coach Didier Deschamps also completely changed his team for tonight. AS Monaco midfielder Aurélien Tchouaméni (22), who seems to be on his way to Real Madrid for around 80 million euros, was the only player who was in the base with the world champions, just like Friday. Karim Benzema and Kylian Mbappé even stayed on the bench in Split all evening, where Luka Modric was put in the spotlight before the game. The 36-year-old Real Madrid midfielder played his 150th international match, having already passed Darijo Srna as the record international in March last year with his 135th appearance for the Croats.
In the first half, Christopher Nkunku, who has had an excellent season at RB Leipzig, was knocked down hard by Domogaj Vida. The ‘Wink-Croat’ got away well with a yellow card and Nkunku was also able to continue. Moments later, Nkunku even scored, but the party was canceled for him and the French as he was narrowly offside.
Seven minutes after the break, Adrien Rabiot made his second goal for France in his 27th international match for France, after a nice pass from striker Wissam Ben Yedder: 0-1. The French then seemed on their way to a victory, but in the 83rd minute substitute Jonathan Clauss clumsily caught up with Andrej Kramaric. The Croatian striker from Hoffenheim gratefully went to the ground and then coolly shot the awarded penalty, by feint AC Milan keeper Mike Maignan.
In the final phase, both countries had good chances for a winning goal, but shots from Antoine Griezmann and Kramaric went wide.
• Croatia – France 1-1
• Austria – Denmark 1-2 (after an hour and a half delay)
• Iceland – Albania 1-1
• Slovakia – Kazakhstan 0-1
• Belarus – Azerbaijan 0-0
• Latvia – Liechtenstein 1-0
• Andorra – Moldova 0-0
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