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Portugal 0-1 France | 5 Talking Points as Les Bleus move into semi-finals | UEFA Nations League 2020-21

France secured a crucial 1-0 win at the Estadio da Luz against Portugal.
France secured a crucial 1-0 win at the Estadio da Luz against Portugal.
ANALYST
Modified 15 Nov 2020, 12:05 IST
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In their second meeting in the space of a couple of weeks, Nations League champions Portugal welcomed reigning world champions France to an empty Estadio da Luz in a key game in the 2020-21 UEFA Nations League.

After a first-half that produced several openings, the game got its first goal in the 53rd minute when N’Golo Kante stabbed home from close range. Despite more chances for both sides, there were no more goals in the game.

The result effectively confirmed France as the Group A3 winners while sending out the Nations League holders crashing out of the tournament. On that note, let's have a look at the five talking points from France’s 1-0 win over Portugal.

#5 Anthony Martial was wasteful against Portugal

Everton vs Manchester United - Premier League
Everton vs Manchester United - Premier League

Anthony Martial, the Manchester United striker, has struggled to keep his place in the national side, and his performance against Portugal in Lisbon showed why is not an automatic starter for Les Bleus.

His lack of composure and wastefulness in front of goal saw him miss as many as three clear-cut chances in the first-half, despite attempting four shots on goal, which was more than anybody else in the game.

Despite his poor showing in the first half, Didier Deschamps allowed him to grace the field for the start of the second. However, with Martial's performances not improving, the 24-year-old was susbstituted in the 77th minute for a more dangerous-looking threat in Olivier Giroud.

Overall, Anthony Martial lost possession six times, missed four chances and attempted no dribbles in a dreadful display against Portugal.

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#4 Is Joao Felix the heir apparent to Portugal captain Cristiano Ronaldo?

Atletico de Madrid vs Cadiz CF - La Liga Santander
Atletico de Madrid vs Cadiz CF - La Liga Santander

People seem to forget that Joao Felix is only 21 years old. So much expectation and hype has been placed on his shoulders, with many tipping him to be the next Cristiano Ronaldo.

The 21-year-old youngster, who was swopped up for £113million by Atletico Madrid, has shone in glimpses for the national team, scoring two goals in 12 senior appearances.

Against France, he was one of the few in red that looked like making things happen. It’s this kind of responsibility that he will soon have to assume, as his more illustrious compatriot, Cristiano Ronaldo, is nearing the end of his illustrious career. 

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Published 15 Nov 2020, 12:05 IST
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