Spain vs France: 16-year-old Yamal sends Spain to Euro 2024 final with record-breaking goal

In a historic night for European football, 16-year-old Lamine Yamal etched his name in the record books by becoming the youngest-ever goalscorer at the Euros. His stunning strike helped Spain overturn a deficit to secure a 2-1 victory over France in Munich on Tuesday, propelling them to the Euro 2024 final.

Early Setback for Spain

Spain found themselves trailing early when Randal Kolo Muani headed in a precise cross from Kylian Mbappe in the ninth minute. The French side, known for their defensive solidity, had only conceded once in their previous five games of the tournament. However, Spain turned the tide in a breathtaking four-minute spell.

Yamal’s Moment of Brilliance

Yamal, who will celebrate his 17th birthday just a day before the final, unleashed a sublime long-range shot from outside the box, curling it past the outstretched fingertips of France’s goalkeeper, Mike Maignan, to equalise. His exceptional goal, which found the top corner of the net, sparked jubilation among the Spanish supporters.

“Receiving the ball, I didn’t think twice. I just shot,” Yamal said after the match. “I’m enjoying every moment and it’s an honour to help my team reach the final.”

Spain Takes the Lead

Spain quickly capitalised on their momentum, taking the lead in the 25th minute. Dani Olmo pounced on a loose ball and fired a low shot that deflected off Jules Kounde before finding the back of the net.

Also Read: Spain vs Germany: Dramatic Merino goal sends Spain to Euro 2024 semifinals

Reflecting on the victory, Olmo expressed his confidence in the team’s capabilities. “We are one step away from glory,” he told ZDF. “This team is unbelievable. We deserve to be in the final.”

On the Verge of History

Spain, now on the verge of a record-breaking fourth European championship, will face either the Netherlands or England in Berlin. This marks their first appearance in a major tournament final since their commanding 4-0 victory over Italy in Euro 2012.

Masterful Game Management

Spain’s strategy of maintaining possession and controlling the tempo proved effective as they stifled France’s attempts to stage a comeback. French coach Didier Deschamps acknowledged Spain’s superiority in game management. “They controlled the game better than us, even after we scored first,” he remarked.

France’s Struggles

Despite France’s wealth of attacking talent, they struggled to find cohesion. Mbappe, who had been playing with a mask due to a broken nose, was unable to make a significant impact. His only goal in nine Euro appearances remains a penalty scored in the group stage against Poland.

Tactical Adjustments

Deschamps’ decision to bench Antoine Griezmann in favour of Ousmane Dembele reflected France’s search for attacking solutions. The early lead, courtesy of Kolo Muani’s header, seemed to promise a different outcome, but Spain’s resilience and tactical discipline turned the match around.

A New Era for Spanish Football

Yamal’s historic goal not only showcased his individual brilliance but also symbolised the dawn of a new era for Spanish football. With three assists already in the tournament, his contributions have been pivotal. The teenager’s exceptional talent and composure on the grand stage promise a bright future for La Roja.

The Road Ahead

As the final whistle blew, it was clear that Spain’s blend of youthful exuberance and experienced game management had earned them a well-deserved spot in the final. The stage is now set for an epic showdown in Berlin, where Spain will aim to secure their place in football history once again.

Samuel Bolaji

Samuel Bolaji holds a Master of Letters in Publishing Studies from the University of Stirling, Scotland, United Kingdom, and a Bachelor of Arts in English from the University of Lagos, Nigeria. He is an experienced researcher, multimedia journalist, writer, and Editor. He is currently the Editor of Arbiterz.

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