Austria 1-1 France: Les Blues fall to bottom of Nations League group

Source: Livescore News

France slipped to the bottom of their Nations League group with an underwhelming 1-1 draw away to Austria in Vienna on Friday.

The competition’s reigning champions have just two points from three Group A1 matches, having lost at home to Denmark and drawn away to Croatia in their opening two games.

It could have been even worse for Les Blues at Ernst Happel Stadion as they trailed to a 37th-minute Andreas Weimann strike until substitute Kylian Mbappe levelled up late on.

With three games to go, Didier Deschamps’ side are four points behind leaders Denmark and two behind Austria and Croatia, with only one team advancing to next year’s finals.

Patrick Pentz produced a fine save to keep out Karim Benzema in the opening 17 minutes, but France were otherwise frustrated by Austria in the first half.

The hosts probed away and found a breakthrough when Konrad Laimer was played in by Marko Arnautovic and in turn picked out Weimann for a simple finish from six yards.

Arnautovic nearly doubled Austria’s lead before the interval after swivelling past William Saliba and getting a shot away, which Hugo Lloris comfortably kept out in the end.

Benjamin Pavard had a long-range effort saved by Pentz and Kingsley Coman blazed over from close range as the inevitable France onslaught arrived early in the second half.

France appeared to run out of steam until Mbappe, brought on in the second half after recovering from injury, linked up with Christopher Nkunku and rifled into the roof of the net.

Mbappe would have snatched a late winner in the final few minutes if not for a fine Pentz save to push his strike onto the frame of the goal from a one-on-one.

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