Teenage sensation Yamal fires Spain into Euro 2024 final with stunning winner against France

Lamine Yamal (red shirt) in action against France

Spain beat France 2-1 in a thrilling Euro 2024 semi-final, with goals from 16-year-old Lamine Yamal and Dani Olmo overturning Randal Kolo Muani's early strike for France.

Yamal's wonder goal made him the youngest ever scorer in a Euro or World Cup semi-final, while Olmo's strike proved to be the winner.

France took the lead in the 9th minute through Kolo Muani's header from a Kylian Mbappe assist

However, Yamal equalized in the 21st minute with a stunning long-range effort that curled into the top corner. Just four minutes later, Olmo put Spain ahead, expertly gathering the ball and firing a low shot that deflected in off Jules Kounde.

Spain held on to their lead in the second half, with goalkeeper Unai Simon making a crucial save from Mbappe late on

The win sees Spain reach their first major tournament final since Euro 2012, where they thrashed Italy 4-0. They await the winner of the Netherlands vs England semi-final in Sunday's final in Berlin

The Spaniards, who have won every game of the tournament so far, confirmed their favourites tag with another display of attacking football, especially in the first half, that is a far cry from the tiki-taka passing game that earned them world and European titles more than a decade ago.

“I’m very happy to have made it to the final,” said man-of-the-match Yamal. “Now the most important thing is to win it. We were in a difficult moment, you wouldn’t expect a goal so soon.”

“I wanted to put it in where it went in, and I’m very happy. I’m happy and content with the victory. I want to win, win and win,” added the teenager.

They will now face the winners of, Wednesdays (today) match between England and Netherlands in the final in Berlin on Sunday as they hunt a record-breaking fourth European crown.

It was a anti-climactic end to France’s tournament, although the 2022 World Cup finalists never lived up to expectations in Germany with a very low conversion rate that carried into the semi-final.

“Spain proved tonight that they are a very good team. We were fortunate to open the scoring, but they caused us problems because they were superior in terms of control,” said France coach Didier Deschamps.

“Tonight they showed all their qualities. We were… perhaps a little less fresh, which led to some technical waste, particularly in the build-up of the game. We didn’t push forward often enough.”

Spain had an early chance when Yamal, the youngest player to feature in a World Cup or Euro semi-final, floated a cross to the far post but Fabian Ruiz headed over the bar.


France did better from an almost identical move in the ninth minute with Kylian Mbappe, playing without a mask after breaking his nose earlier in the tournament, crossing for Kolo Muani to head in their first goal from open play at Euro 2024.

But the Spaniards, who were missing suspended Dani Carvajal and Robin Le Normand as well as injured Pedri, quickly turned the game around.

Yamal curled a stunning left-footed effort from 25 metres in off the post to break another record held by Brazil great Pele, as the youngest scorer in a Euro or World Cup.

Before France had any time to recover Olmo completed their lightning-quick comeback in the 25th with a shot that was deflected in by France’s Jules Kounde.

France, who had only conceded one goal in their previous five games in the tournament, upped the tempo after the break and had chances through Mbappe and Theo Hernandez.

But they could not carve out an equaliser with Spain, pulling back and successfully soaking up the pressure.

-Courtesy, Reuters
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