Euro 2024: Kylian Mbappé stays on bench as France survives disallowed goal to tie Netherlands

Kylian Mbappé stayed on the bench as France failed to break through in a tense and entertaining 0-0 draw with the Netherlands in Leipzig.

Xavi Simons had a 69th minute goal disallowed for a controversial offside decision that would have given the Dutch a hugely important victory and put it on course to finish top of Group D.

Simons lashed the ball home from the edge of the penalty area but it was adjudged that Denzel Dumfries had impaired the vision of France goalkeeper Mike Maignan. The Netherlands, with some justification, claimed that Maignan could not have reached Simons’ strike in any case.

Netherlands’ goal is disallowed against France after VAR review | UEFA Euro 2024

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Without Mbappé, World Cup finalist France was lacking its usual sparkle, with its captain not risked as he continues to recover from a broken nose sustained in the opening game against Austria.

However, it still had enough chances to have come out of the contest feeling disappointed as head coach Didier Deschamps now has work to do if his squad is to win the group. This, surprising given the firepower on both sides, was the first goalless draw of the competition.

Antoine Griezmann, deputizing as captain, dragged two efforts on goal wide, and had another saved by Bart Verbruggen. Aurelien Tchouameni and Ousmane Dembele also had chances form which they might have done better.

The stalemate leaves the group delicately balanced. The Netherlands faces Austria next, on Tuesday, while France takes on a Poland side that has disappointed so far, losing both of its games.

And the discussion surrounding Mbappé will continue. 

The past few days since he collided with Austria defender Kevin Danso, the chatter has all been about the 25-year-old superstar. 

If he would need possible surgery (no), if he will wear a mask (yes), what color it will be (who knows?), and how much he will figure for the rest of tournament.

The last question remains unanswered — as does the fate of Group D.

Martin Rogers is a columnist for FOX sports. Follow him on Twitter @MRogersFOX and subscribe to the daily newsletter.

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