Didier Deschamps defends Kylian Mbappe from criticism over Euro 2024 form

  • Mbappe yet to score from open play at Euro 2024
  • French forward suffered broken nose in opening fixture
  • Deschamps substituted Mbappe towards the end of the quarter-final victory over Portugal
Mbappe is yet to find his feet at Euro 2024
Mbappe is yet to find his feet at Euro 2024 / Alex Grimm/GettyImages

France manager Didier Deschamps insists he is not concerned by the form of Kylian Mbappe this summer at Euro 2024.

Mbappe, who suffered a broken nose during France's opening fixture of the tournament, has just one penalty goal to his name this summer and was hooked towards the end of the quarter-final victory over Portugal, despite his country needing a goal and facing a penalty shoot-out.

While Deschamps acknowledged physical issues could have impacted Mbappe's output, he insisted he has no fears about the Real Madrid forward's mental state heading into Tuesday's semi-final against Spain.

"He played 110 minutes, we knew extra time was a bit hard," Deschamps said of his decision to hook Mbappe against Portugal. "Physically, even if he seems slightly off, he will be on that pitch. We wanted him to rest up as much as he needed to. We did everything we could and I am convinced that Kylian is in the right headspace.

"It is not linked to the last game but the end of last season, he had an issue with his back, his blow to the nose, he knows it could have been the end of the road but he's still here. I am convinced [against Spain] Kylian will do everything, as everyone will, to give it 110%.

Kylian Mbappe
Mbappe has struggled with his new mask / Lars Baron/GettyImages

"He is in a new situation for him, the fact he is having to wear the mask which means he has a field of vision that is different.

"This was a huge shock to him and it is something he had to get used to with the bruise as well. The swelling has gone down but with each day he is getting stronger. He is going to have to get used to it for weeks or months."

Mbappe has openly discussed the "horror" of playing with a mask, revealing just how difficult he is finding adapting to his new injury.

France midfielder Adrien Rabiot also offered his support to Mbappe and fellow under-fire forward Antoine Griezmann.

"This is a team game and even if they are having some troubles, we have reached the semi-final," Rabiot said. "Team spirit is important and winning as a team is more important than individuals.

"For Kylian and Antoine, maybe their legs aren't as fresh as they could be, but we are 100% behind them. We have faith in them. They are players that can change a game at any point. When we have the captain [Mbappe] or Antoine experiencing a rough patch, it's fine, we are there to support them."