Spain vs France LIVE: Nations League final team news and latest build-up tonight

<p>France fans at the San Siro ahead of the Nations League final</p>

France fans at the San Siro ahead of the Nations League final

(Getty Images)

The second ever Nations League final takes place this evening as Spain go head-to-head with France at the San Siro in Milan.

Following Portugal’s triumph against the Netherlands in the inaugural final of the competition in 2019, another heavyweight clash will decide this year’s winners, and both the Spanish and French have certainly earned their spots in this showpiece match. On Wednesday night, Spain ended the remarkable unbeaten run of European champions Italy for a 2-1 win to avenge their defeat in this summer’s Euro 2020 semi-finals, while France battled from two goals down to overcome Belgium 3-2 in the last minute on Thursday.

For former Barcelona coach Luis Enrique, this evening’s game represents an opportunity for his new-look Spain side to build upon their fine run at the Euros and claim the country’s first piece of silverware since the 2012 European Championship. France boss Didier Deschamps, meanwhile, will see this clash as a chance for his team to move past their shock exit to Switzerland in the last 16 of this summer’s Euros. The decisive penalty miss in that meeting’s shootout came from Kylian Mbappe, but the Paris Saint-Germain forward scored the equaliser against Belgium from the spot this week.

Follow live updates from the 2021 Nations League final between Spain and France, below.

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Spain vs France: Nations League final

France manager Didier Deschamps: “It’s impossible to deprive Spain of the ball. It’s in their DNA to have the majority of possession. You can press but not just any old how. They’re capable of passing the ball out even under pressure. They also pressed Italy very well when they lost the ball.

“The best tonic is winning. The evening after the semi-final there was a lot of joy and happiness and it meant there was a lighter mood the next day. It gives everyone confidence.

“Spain have maintained the quality of their play. We have more experience but that gives us no guarantees. We’ll need to have all the right ingredients in order to go out there and claim the trophy.”

(AFP via Getty Images)

Jamie Braidwood10 October 2021 18:53

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Spain vs France: Nations League final

France team: Lloris; Kounde, Varane, Kimpembe; Pavard, Tchouameni, Pogba, T Hernandez; Griezmann; Mbappe, Benzema

And two changes for Deschamps, too! Presnel Kimpembe starts ahead of Lucas Hernandez on the left of the back three, while 21-year-old midfielder Aurelien Tchouameni replaces Adrien Rabiot. Tchouameni made an impact in France’s second-half comeback as a substitute on Wednesday.

Jamie Braidwood10 October 2021 18:42

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Spain vs France: Nations League final

Spain team: Simon; Azpilicueta, Garcia, Laporte, Alonso; Busquets, Rodri, Gavi, Sarabia, F Torres, Oyarzabal

Two changes for Luis Enrique, with Eric Garcia coming in for Pau Torres in defence and Rodri replacing Koke in midfield.

Jamie Braidwood10 October 2021 18:39

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Spain vs France: Nations League final

It was a game of two halves for France against Belgium on Wednesday. Didier Deschamps was facing a full-blown crisis when France went into half time 2-0 down and on the back of an abject display. But with the quality in the French team, it only takes a 20-minute spell in which their star names combines to blow the opposition away.

We saw that against Switzerland in the summer, even though Deschamps’ side went on to lose that match, and when Kylian Mbappe, Karim Benzema, Antoine Griezmann and Paul Pogba clicked against Belgium, Roberto Martinez’s team had no answer. Which France will we see tonight?

France predicted XI: Lloris; Kounde, Varane, L Hernandez; Pavard, Rabiot, Pogba, T Hernandez; Griezmann; Mbappe, Benzema

Jamie Braidwood10 October 2021 18:34

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Spain vs France: Nations League final

Ferran Torres produced one of the best performances of his career with his two-goal display against Italy on Tuesday, but the forward’s night came to an end earlier than expected after he picked up an injury near the start of the second half. The 21-year-old is expected to be available tonight however, which will be a boost to Luis Enrique.

La Roja are without several would-be starters for the Nations League finals, with Pedri, Dani Olmo, Alvaro Morata and Jordi Alba all out injured. Torres certainly took his chance on Tuesday, as did 17-year-old Gavi and 18-year-old Yeremi Pino. Both are expected to play a part again tonight after bright debut displays, with Gavi set for his second start for the national team in Enrique’s midfield.

Spain predicted XI: Unai Simón; Azpilicueta, Laporte, Pau Torres, Alonso: Gavi, Busquets, Koke; Sarabia, Torres, Oyarzabal

Jamie Braidwood10 October 2021 18:27

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Spain vs France: Nations League final

Spain and France reached tonight’s Nations League final thanks to a pair of thrilling semi-finals on Tuesday and Wednesday. It almost felt like the encore that Euro 2020 deserved, and there was little drop off in terms of competitiveness or intensity. International football should always be fun, and let’s hope we get another entertaining match tonight.

(AFP via Getty Images)

(Getty Images)

Jamie Braidwood10 October 2021 18:21

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Spain vs France: Nations League final

The second ever Nations League final takes place this evening as Spain go head-to-head with France at the San Siro in Milan.

For former Barcelona coach Luis Enrique, this evening’s game represents an opportunity for his new-look Spain side to build upon their fine run at the Euros and claim the country’s first piece of silverware since the 2012 European Championship. France boss Didier Deschamps, meanwhile, will see this clash as a chance for his team to move past their shock exit to Switzerland in the last 16 of this summer’s Euros. The decisive penalty miss in that meeting’s shootout came from Kylian Mbappe, but the Paris Saint-Germain forward scored the equaliser against Belgium from the spot this week.

Alex Pattle10 October 2021 18:10

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