Sport World Cup 2018

Monday 23 July 2018

'I'd have chinned him' - Martin O'Neill not happy with Kylian Mbappe as Gary Neville condemns Uruguay keeper

Referee Nestor Pitana stops Diego Godin of Uruguay from arguing with Kylian Mbappe of France during the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia Quarter Final match between Uruguay and France.
Referee Nestor Pitana stops Diego Godin of Uruguay from arguing with Kylian Mbappe of France during the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia Quarter Final match between Uruguay and France.
Kevin Palmer

Kevin Palmer

Ireland manager Martin O'Neill was in colourful mood as he chastised France forward Kylian Mbappe after he indulged in a little showboating during the World Cup quarter-final against Uruguay.

France eased into the semi-final with a comfortable 2-0 win against a Uruguay side lacking the presence of their injured striker Edinson Cavani and the comments of O'Neill that caught the eye after the game.

After his fellow ITV pundit Ryan Giggs defended the Paris Saint-Germain star's back-heals and flicks that were infuriated the Uruguay players and after he rolled on the ground in theatrical fashion after a clash with Cristian Rodríguez, O'Neill suggested he may have struggled to control his temper if he was lining up against a player showing Mbappe's arrogance.

"I'm very much in the Rodríguez camp. I'd have chinned him," stated O'Neill before he added. "I am totally incapable of chinning anyone. Mbappe has gone down is a ridiculous fashion. Rodríguez was telling him to stop play acting."

Meanwhile, ITV commentator Gary Neville was also in feisty mood as he offered up a superb commentary performance that included a damning critique of Uruguay keeper Fernando Muslera after his howling error allowed Antoine Griezmann's shot to slip through his fingers to seal the win for France.

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Fernando Muslera of Uruguay fumbles the ball as Antoine Griezmann of France scores his team's second goal.

"What's he doing," questioned Neville, as he analysed Muslera's mistake. "Tried to do a stupid parry, just catch the damn thing. It’s a football not a firebomb."

Neville was also stunned by the sight of Uruguay's Jose Giminez crying while the game was still ongoing, as he clearly felt his World Cup dream was dying.

"He's crying, what's he's crying for," questioned Neville. "There are still five minutes left to play. Get down the other end and try to score a goal.

"I'm all for emotion and passion, but that's embarrassing."

O'Neill also offered up a less than glowing view of the France performance, as he suggested Didier Deschamps men have yet to hit top form despite their run to the semi-finals in Russia.

"How many times in this competition have we said that France put in a professional performance," he added. "They have not really hit the heights at all despite the talent they posses in their group, with the exception of the game against Argentina.

"They were workmanlike without really breaking Uruguay down. They haven't really been impressive, but they are in the semi-final of the World Cup and that's fantastic."

We like our TV pundits to be forthright and to the point and there is no doubting O'Neill and Neville ticked that box with their summation as France became the first team to book their place in the semi-finals in Russia.

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