France thrash Netherlands 4-0 as LEMAR, Mbappe run riot Football | Nigeria sports news, transfers & gossips

France thrash Netherlands 4-0 as LEMAR, Mbappe run riot

Thomas Lemar scored twice and Kylian Mbappe also found the net as France thrashed 10-man Netherlands 4-0 at the Stade de France, moving them to the top of Group A in the race to qualify for the 2018 World Cup.

Antoine Griezmann opened the scoring, slotting through Jasper Cillessen’s legs after 14 minutes, before Kevin Strootman saw red for the Dutch early in the second half in Paris.

Lemar then took centre stage, cutting across a bouncing ball to send a left-footed volley beyond the overworked Cillessen in the 73rd minute to record his first international goal.

The Monaco winger didn’t have to wait too long for his second though, Griezmann unselfishly squaring the ball for his team-mate, before Mbappe broke his France duck on the same day he officially signed for Paris Saint-Germain with the fourth in injury time.

The result, coupled with Sweden losing 3-2 in Bulgaria, means Didier Deschamps’ side move three points clear in the standings, while the Dutch now sit six points adrift in fourth place.

Lemar – who started the game after his name had been heavily involved in transfer speculation during the day, with both Arsenal and Liverpool linked with a move – was one of several home players to dazzle the crowd.

His appearance on the team sheet effectively ended talk about his future and he looked unperturbed as he helped France seize control right from the kick-off.

The hosts had already gone close through Olivier Giroud before Griezmann broke the deadlock.

Having worked a one-two with Giroud to get in behind the Dutch defence, the Atletico Madrid striker cleverly opened up his body as he ran clear, allowing him to pass the ball with his favoured left foot through Cillessen.

The goalscorer picked up a booking soon after for a crude lunge on Quincy Promes near the touchline, although the French had few alarms at the back.

As if Dick Advocaat’s side didn’t have enough trouble with 11 against 11, their hopes of getting back in the game were dealt a severe blow when Strootman was dismissed, picking up two bookings in the space of six second-half minutes for late tackles.

Stefan de Vrij stopped N’Golo Kante from converting Kingsley Coman’s low cross with a crucial block before Robin van Persie was summoned from the bench to make his first international appearance since October 2015.

However, not even the introduction of their leading scorer could inspire the Netherlands.

While Cillessen denied Paul Pogba from close range, there was little the goalkeeper could do to stop Lemar’s sweetly-struck effort from outside the area finding the net.

The same player tapped home a third before substitute Mbappe rammed home a low shot from a tight angle just 15 minutes after replacing Giroud.


Ajike is one of Nigeria's top Sportscasters with over 15 years of experience in writing and talking Sports.

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