A gala party. Before discovering their future rival in the next European Championship, the France Espoirs team was preparing to challenge Germany, the current champion who won in 2021, against Portugal (1-0). For the occasion, Sylvain Ripoll lined up a 4-2-3-1 with Gouiri-Le Fée-Ngoumou, behind Rutter. Fofana, Kalulu and the Lyonnais Caqueret and Lukeba were also starters. Opposite, we find in particular the Dortmund nugget Moukoko, associated with Thielmann (Cologne) at the forefront.
On paper, the match looked largely in favor of Les Bleuets, who quickly shared their technique of getting their foot on the ball. The first alert, after a good construction, came from Merlín, whose long shot was deflected by the German goalkeeper Atubolu (8th). More enterprising, the French were increasingly dangerous, but failed to create clear chances. Result: Germany took advantage and gradually regained possession of the ball.
The duo Enzo Le Fée-Amine Gouiri delighted
The reigning European champions could even have made the difference before half-time on a counter-attack, but Netz, albeit alone in front of an empty goal, saw Kalulu get in the way when he fired from close range (40th). After the break, the tricolor accelerated and finally managed to open the scoring. Well served by Le Fée, Gouiri made a nice solo run and was able to hit a fine and rolling shot, directly to the opposite side of the net (1-0, 52nd).
Again, Le Fée, very long-legged, saw his shot brush the frame (59th). Few chances after that, while Les Bleuets clearly could have secured victory sooner. But finally, after a decisive reflection by Meslier at the end of the game (86th), Ripoll’s men came from behind a good result against a prestigious rival before a final friendly against Belgium, at the Hainaut de Valenciennes stadium, on Monday (9:00 p.m.) . . Afterwards, they will prepare for the European Under-23 Championship, which will take place next summer, in Georgia and Romania.