France ends the Nations League with a defeat in Denmark. The world champions continue to search for their World Cup form.
Another setback for the French national team!
The L’Équipe Tricolore lost the final Nations League match in Denmark with 0:2. As a result, the reigning 2018 World Champions finish Group 1 of League A in third place with just five points and one win.
At Parken in Copenhagen, Kasper Dolberg took advantage of a positional error by Bayern defender Dayot Upamecano to make it 1-0 to the hosts (34th). Andreas Skov Olsen increased the lead (39.) before the break. After the restart, superstar Kylian Mbappe failed with three great chances.
The French, who won the last edition of the league in 2021, thus joins the list of top teams still looking for form ahead of the World Cup in Qatar (20 November to 18 December). Both England, who have even been relegated to League B due to their already determined fourth place in the group, and Germany show considerable problems in their last international matches before the World Cup.
The Netherlands qualified for Final Four
On the other hand, the Dutch national football team did not show any weakness and qualified for the final round of the Nations League. On the last matchday, Bondscoach Louis van Gaal’s eleven defeated neighbors Belgium 1-0 (0-0) and maintained their lead in Group A4. In the parallel match, Poland, led by ex-Munich player Robert Lewandowski, won 1-0 (0-0) against Wales, who were relegated to the B-League.
The Belgians, with former French star striker Thierry Henry replacing the suspended Roberto Martinez on the sidelines, would have had to win by three goals to move past Oranje. But the Red Devils around ex-Dortmund player Axel Witsel remained too harmless for the entire duration of the game. Virgil van Dijk scored the winning goal (73rd) for the Netherlands, which will fight for the title in June 2023.
Wales, with star striker Gareth Bale, failed to win their sixth game and were relegated. In an even match, Welshman Daniel James missed the best chance in the first half after a counterattack (32nd), Karol Swiderski scored the winner for the Poles (58th) after a vital assist from Lewandowski.
Austria relegated, Croatia in the final round
Team manager Ralf Rangnick and the Austrian national football team have been relegated from the A-class in the Nations League. The long-time Bundesliga coach saw his team lose 3-1 (1-1) to runners-up Croatia to seal last place in Group A1.
The Croatians entered the final round in June as leaders of the table. Denmark had to settle for second place despite beating world champions and defending champions France 2-0. The Netherlands also reached the Final Four as Group A4 leaders with a 1-0 (0-0) win over neighbors Belgium. In the parallel match, Poland, led by ex-Munich player Robert Lewandowski, won 1-0 (0-0) against Wales, who, like Austria, were relegated.
In the first leg on 3 June, Rangnick had started his Austria engagement with a 3-0 win in Croatia. Since then, however, there has been no victory – and now the return to the B-League.
Captain Luka Modric gave the Croatians an early lead in front of 42,000 spectators at the Ernst Happel Stadium in Vienna (6th). But only three minutes later, Christoph Baumgartner from Hoffenheim equalized with a header.
The goal scorer (24th) missed a top-class chance for the Austrian lead before the break, as did record international Marko Arnautovic (45th), who passed Andreas Herzog with his 104th game. On the other side, substitute Marko Livaja (69th) and Dejan Lovren (72nd) scored.