National teams 14 September 2023, 11:36

Goals, debuts, qualification: A look back at the September international break!

Goals, debuts, qualification: A look back at the September international break!
The first international break of the season is over and many Monegasques represented their respective countries. So between first caps, trophies and goals, it is time to take stock before the resumption of Ligue 1.

The break is over for the AS Monaco internationals, who will now return to the foot of the Rock. But before heading back to Ligue 1 action in Lorient, here is a quick summary of the performances of our Rouge et Blanc on international duty. Between debuts, goals, qualifications and trophies, here’s our lookn at the September break.📄

Euro 2024: France and Switzerland in pole position 🇪🇺

Qualifying for Euro 2024 took place of pride this international window, and the Monegasques involved were a hit. The French team of Youssouf Fofana first logically won against Ireland (2-0), and thus retained the lead in their group. A substitute at the Parc des Princes, the midfielder from the Principality club came on 12 minutes from time against Germany in a friendly, but could not prevent defeat for Les Bleus against the hosts (2-1) .

It was also success for Denis Zakaria and Switzerland in the European qualifying. A starter in the match against Kosovo, the new Monegasque and his teammates conceded a draw in the final moments (2-2). On the bench for a visit from Andorra, our new number 6 witnessed a big win for the Nati (3-0), who also take top spot in their group.

AFCON: Côte d’Ivoire and Mali seal their places  🌍

Before kicking off in four months, the Africa Cup of Nations saw its last contenders fighting for the remaining places. Already qualified, Mali with Mohamed Camara, who started, easily disposed of Sudan (4-0).

It was the same for Ivory Coast, the hosts, who won against Lesotho (1-0). This was another victory for the compatriots of Wilfried Singo, who was a substitute. The two were then to meet in a friendly, but the match was cut short, stopped at halftime due to weather conditions.

It was a less impressive result for Krépin Diatta and Ismail Jakobs with Senegal. In a high-flying friendly against Algeria, the two players, who both came on in the second half (28 minutes for Krépin, 4 minutes for Iso), were unable to turn the tide in a 0-1 defeat. It was, however, only a slight disappointment for the Lions of Téranga, who have also qualified for AFCON 2023.

Balogun scores for the USMNT 🎯

Even though it is still far away in the calendar, the 2026 World Cup is just around the corner, with the start of qualifying on the American continent. Co-organizers, the United States are not taking part, but still had two friendly matches on the program.

It was a good performance from Folarin Balogun, who had started against Uzbekistan in a 3-0 win, to distinguish himself by opening the score against Oman in a 4-0 victory, for his second goal for his country. As a bonus, he took home the man of the match trophy!

Facing Qatar in a friendly with Russia, Aleksandr Golovin, played virtually the entire match (1-1).

A debut for Caio Henrique 🇧🇷

Things went rather well for the Seleção and the duo of  Caio Henrique and Vanderson, both new to their country’s senior team! The Brazilians made short work of Bolivia (5-1), as part of 2026 World Cup qualifying. It was an opportunity for the Monegasque left back to honor his first cap with Brazil, with whom he played his first 20 minutes.


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Traveling to Peru next, it was Vanderson who came on five minutes from the end of the match. It was another cap for both, and a second victory for Brazil (0-1), who take the lead in South American qualifying.

It was a slightly more mixed start for Guillermo Maripán and Chile, who were unable to do anything against Uruguay (3-1), for the first group match for La Roja. A starter in this first match, Memo’ was also involved in the second against Colombia, which ended in a goalless draw (0-0)

An impressive display for Les Espoirs 🇫🇷

It was a great debut and great success for our young Monegasques this time. This was particularly the case for Maghnes Akliouche and Chrislain Matsima, who started with France’s Espoirs (U-21). Against Denmark, the two regulars in the first team first showed confidence with a clear victory (4-1), for Thierry Henry‘s first match on the bench. As a starter, the central defender played 73 minutes while the attacking midfielder came on at halftime.

The latter then continued with the start of the Euro 2025 qualifiers. In Slovenia, the team impressed to win in style (0-4). Chrislain was in the eleven and played the entire match, while Maghnes made a very good entry 20 minutes from time, being involved in the fourth goal.

Denmark was also Malamine Efekele’s opponent with the French U-20 team. And it was a great debut for the product of La Diagonale, as the first match ended in a hard-fought draw (2-2), before a great victory for France in the second (1-3).

A trophy for the U-18s 🏆

There were lots of matches for the AS Monaco players, but also tournaments. Three young players from the Academy and winners of the 2023 Coupe Gambardella had a blast, and above all performed well!

In Limoges for an international tournament, Joan Tincres, Saïmon Bouabré and Aladji Bamba won everything that was possible: victorious in their three matches, they left Nouvelle-Aquitaine with the trophy, as well as the trophy for best player of the tournament for the recently minted professional as Joan Tincres scored a goal in the 2-0 victory against Japan.

For his part, Ritchy Valme celebrated his debut with the French U-19s. A substitute during the first two matches (1 victory, 1 defeat) of this friendly tournament played in Serbia, the captain of the Elite Group saw his teammates win against the organizing country in the last match of this gathering (0-1).

A pair of “diablotins” are also involved 🇧🇪

Things were a success also for Eliot Matazo with the Belgium U-21s. Against Kazakhstan, in a match as part of European qualifying, the Monegasque will have done as well as his French counterparts, since he picked up three points (1-0) with 20 minutes on the pitch .

Finally, one of the newest Academy graduates, Samuel Nibombé, debuted for the U-17s, with whom he played two matches against Ireland. He came on during the first match, which ended in a draw (0-0) while the second was a narrow loss. (0-1).

Rise. Risk. Repeat.