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Kolo Muani nets late to see frustrated France into last eight over Belgium



Kolo Muani nets late to see frustrated France into last eight over Belgium

France secured their place in the Euro 2024 quarter-finals with a dramatic 1-0 victory over Belgium, continuing their dominance over the Red Devils in major tournaments. This win marks France’s fifth consecutive victory against Belgium in such competitions.

Match Overview

First Half

  • Cautious Start: The match began slowly, with both teams hesitant to take risks. Despite the presence of star strikers Kylian Mbappe and Romelu Lukaku, it took until midway through the first half for any significant action.
  • De Bruyne’s Free-Kick: Kevin De Bruyne’s free-kick, deflected to make it awkward, forced France’s goalkeeper Mike Maignan into a minor save.
  • Best Chance: A long pass from Aurelien Tchouameni found Jules Kounde, whose cross was met by Marcus Thuram’s header, narrowly missing the target.

Second Half

  • Increased French Pressure: France matched their first-half shot-on-target tally within five minutes of the second half, with Tchouameni’s long-range effort requiring a smart save from Koen Casteels.
  • Belgium’s Close Call: Belgium created sporadic chances, including a near-goal from Yannick Carrasco, denied by a last-ditch block from Theo Hernandez.
  • Maignan’s Key Save: Maignan made a crucial save from De Bruyne’s shot, which seemed destined to ensure the match would go into extra time.

Decisive Moment

  • Kolo Muani’s Twist and Goal: In the closing stages, Randal Kolo Muani twisted in the box and saw his shot deflect off Jan Vertonghen, wrong-footing Casteels for what was later ruled an own goal. This moment of luck sealed the victory for France.

Match Statistics

  • Shots on Target: France improved their attacking output in the second half, creating more pressure on the Belgian defense.
  • Defensive Solidity: Both teams showed strong defensive performances, with critical saves and blocks maintaining the game’s tension until the final moments.


  • France’s Quarter-Final Match: Les Bleus will face either Portugal or Slovenia on Friday evening.
  • Belgium’s Disappointment: Once again, Belgium’s “Golden Generation” fell short in a major tournament, unable to capitalize on their opportunities.

Key Players

  • Aurelien Tchouameni: Instrumental in midfield, providing both defensive cover and attacking impetus with his passing and long-range efforts.
  • Mike Maignan: Crucial saves kept France in the game during critical moments.
  • Randal Kolo Muani: His decisive action in the box led to the winning goal, highlighting his impact as a substitute.

France’s victory over Belgium in this tightly contested match underscores their resilience and ability to capitalize on key moments, propelling them into the quarter-finals with confidence.

Source: ghmediahub