Pavard and Upamecano defeat Spain in Nations League final

Read article contents
Increase size

Well done, Benjamin Pavard, Dayot Upamecano and Lucas Hernández! With two FC Bayern players in the team, France defeated Spain 2-1 (0-0) in the final of the UEFA Nations League on Sunday evening to secure the trophy for the first time in this fledgling European competition. FCB right-back Pavard was in the starting XI for the final, with Upamecano coming off the bench in the 43rd minute to replace the injured Raphaël Varane in central defence for the Équipe Tricolore. Hernández, who played the full 90 minutes in the semi-final against Belgium on Thursday (3-2), wasn't used.

Dayot Upamecano came off the bench for the French side just before the break.

Game picks up pace after an hour

In Milan's Giuseppe Meazza Stadium, the two rivals largely neutralised each other in the first half and chances were few and far between, before events came to a head after just over an hour. First, following a counter-attack in the 64th minute, a strike from Bayern player Lucas Hernández' brother Theo raised French hopes, but it rattled off the crossbar. Just seconds later, Mikel Oyarzabal put the Spaniards ahead, but Karim Benzema responded almost straight from the re-start with a stunning curling effort to level the score at 1-1.

Benjamin Pavard was in complete control of the right side of defence until his substitution in the 80th minute.

The match now fully lived up to its promise, with both teams exchanging blows - with the French eventually coming out on top: after a few good scoring opportunities for both sides, Kylian Mbappé fired the world champions to a 2-1 win. Corentin Tolisso and Kingsley Coman also added another trophy to their collections - both Bayern players turned out for France in this year's UEFA Nations League campaign, playing their part in the Les Bleus' triumph.

Another draw for Nianzou

Tanguy Nianzou already saw action with the Équipe Tricolore youngsters on Sunday afternoon. The French U20s couldn't manage more than a goalless draw against the Tunisian U20s at the Stade d'Honneur de Mallemort in the second part of a friendly double-header. Three days earlier, the two teams had already played out a draw in Fos-sur-Mer (1-1).

Some of  the FC Bayern internationals were also in action on Saturday evening - here are the results:

Related news