2020-21 UEFA Nations League; France 0 Portugal 0 Report
2020-21 UEFA Nations League – Matchday 3 of 6 Report – Sunday, October 11, 2020
France 0 Portugal 0 – GROUP A3
Ronaldo and Mbappe fail to score as game ends in goalless draw
With so many prolific scorers on either side, one would have expected the France-Portugal tie at Stade de France to be a goalfest. But what turned out was a tame 0-0 draw.
Both Cristiano Ronaldo and Kylian Mbappe fialed to come on the scoresheet with the latter creating the best opportunity of the match with some brilliant individual ball skills, but the young Frenchman’s effort was well dealth with by Wolves custodian Rui Patricio.
Ronaldo who has not scored against France till date, had his best chance in stoppage time, forcing Hugo Lloris into a decent save with a stinging left-footed drive.
The Portuguese thought they had scored by veteran Portugal defender Pepe’s header was ruled out for offside.
France’s best oppotunity as mentioned earlier came through Mbappe who weaved past Danilo but his goalbound shot was denied by Patricio.
The heavyweight Nations League encounter at Stade de France was a repeat of the Euro 2016 final at the same venue when Portugal shocked the hosts to take the title.
Around a thousand fans were allowed into the stadium but they were loud throughout.
Both Portugal and France retain their 1st and 2nd positions respectively in the Group A3 cluster after taking a point each from the drawn game.
Poland 0 Italy 0 – GROUP A1
Poland and Italy draw a blank at Gdansk
Roberto Mancini’s Italy took their tally of unbeaten games to 18 when they played out a lacklustre 0-0 draw away in Poland and maintained their place at the top of the Group A1 cluster.
Juventus winger Federico Chiesa had the best opportunity to put the Italians ahead early on but apart from that failed attempt the Azzuris just had three shots on target despite hogging nearly two-thirds of the ball possession.
Chelsea defender Emerson Palmieri wasted a great chance for the Italians a little after the break, heading Federico Chiesa’s well-directed cross just wide of Lukasz Fabianski’s post, while a critical block late in the game by Leonardo Bonucci denied Karol Linetty a certain winner.
This was after a cross-shot by Jakub Moder forced Italian keeper Gianluigi Donnarumma into a smart save at his near post.
Bayern Munich goal-machine Robert Lewandowski was totally ineffective, failing to land even a single shot on target.
Poland remain in the thrid spot with 4 points just one behind Italy and level with 2nd placed Netherlands.
Just a little over 10,000 fans turned up the Stadion Energa at Gdansk prompting Mancini to say.
“It was beautiful. It was wonderful to play in front of a crowd again.”
Bosnia Herzegovina 0 Netherlands 0 – GROUP A1
Bosnia Herzegovina holds Netherlands to a draw
New Dutch coach Frank de Boer was made to wait for a win as a resilient Bosnia held his side to a goalless draw away at the Stadion Bilino Polje in Zenica.
Having started his reign with a disappointing 1-0 loss to Mexico in an international home friendly, De Boer’s side failed to make inroads despite the 70 per cent ball possession they enjoyed.
The nearest the visitor’s came to scoring was through a Luuk de Jong header but it was effectively saved by Bosnian goalie Ibrahim Sehic.
For the hosts, Barcelona midfielder Miralem Pjanic created the best opportunity after the break but his low strike was saved Jasper Cillessen.
The result means the Dutch have four points from three Nations League games and are second in Group A1 after Italy while Bosnia Herzegovina still languish at the bottom in the fourth.
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