MATCHDAY: Winless France faces Croatia in Nations League

A look at what’s happening in European soccer on Monday:


Defending champion France is under big pressure as it hosts Croatia in a must-win game at Stade de France. Les Bleus have picked up just two points from the first three games in League A, where only the group winner makes it to the Final Four and the last-place team gets relegated. France is last with two points. The Croats are level with second-place Austria on four. They are two points behind Group 1 leader Denmark, which hosts Austria in Copenhagen. France coach Didier Deschamps says Mike Maignan will start in goal ahead of long-standing No. 1 Hugo Lloris. Deschamps also may have to finally drop first-choice forward Antoine Griezmann, who has not scored for France since early January, and instead select Christopher Nkunku in attack alongside star duo Karim Benzema and Kylian Mbappe. It was Nkunku’s astute pass which set up Mbappe’s late equalizer in a 1-1 draw away to Austria on Friday night. In the second-tier League B, Group 2 leader Israel travels to Iceland. In League C, there’s a table-topping clash in Group 3 as leader Kazakhstan hosts second-place Slovakia, which is one point behind.


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