Wed. Aug 10th, 2022

Kylian Mbappe scored late as world champions France came from behind to win the Nations League with a 2-1 win over Spain in the final on Monday (AEST).

Mbappe scored with 10 minutes left when France were again forced to fight back, just as they had done in the semi-final against Belgium.

There were few chances in a whimsical final in Milan, but the match sprang to life shortly after the hour mark.

Moments after France hit the woodwork, Mikel Oyarzabal fired Spain ahead, but their lead lasted less than two minutes before a magnificent finish from Karim Benzema in the 66th minute equalized.

“This is the first piece of silverware I have won with France, so I am very proud and happy,” said Benzema, who only recently returned to France’s squad after a five-year absence.

Soccer player celebrates with teammate after scoring a goal during a match
Karim Benzema celebrates after scoring France’s first goal in the UEFA Nations League final against Spain.(Getty: Emmanuele Ciancaglini)

“We played two top-level performances.

“We went out there to win the trophy, so I’m happy with the team as a whole and I’m proud as an individual.”

There was a video review of a possible offside on Mbappe, but the goal was given when Spain defender Eric Garcia was the last to touch the ball as he tried to intercept the pass to the French striker.

Two football players celebrate after scoring a goal during a match
Goals from Karim Benzema (left) and Kylian Mbappe helped France claim the Nations League victory.(AP: Luca Bruno)

“I do not think I have ever spoken ill of referees … I have nothing to say,” said Spain coach Luis Enrique.

“I concentrate on trying to get my teams to play the best way and accept wins and losses.”

Meanwhile, European champions Italy defeated Belgium 2-1 to pick up third place on Sunday.

AP

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