France forward Kylian Mbappe has apologized for missing the decisive penalty in Monday’s 5-4 shootout loss to Switzerland that saw the world champions crash out of Euro 2020 in the last 16.
Switzerland scored twice in the final 10 minutes in a thrilling 3-3 draw in Bucharest and, following a goalless extra time, prevailed in the shootout after goalkeeper Yann Sommer saved from Mbappe.
Mbappe said France were “incredibly sad” after exiting the tournament and that his miss would keep him awake at night.
“I’m sorry about this penalty. I wanted to help the team but I failed,” Mbappe wrote on Instagram after the game.
“It’s going to be hard to sleep after this, but unfortunately these are the ups and downs of this sport that I love so much.
“The most important (thing) will be to get back up again even stronger for future commitments. Congratulations and good luck to the Swiss team.”
Switzerland face Spain in St Petersburg in the quarter-finals on Friday.
France boss Didier Deschamps refused to blame Mbappe for his costly miss in Bucharest which saw the pre-tournament favourites knocked out.
“Nobody can be annoyed with him,” Deschamps said. “When you take the responsibility, it can happen. He is obviously very affected by it.”
France captain Hugo Lloris reiterated the stance, saying: “We win together, we lose together. We are all responsible for being eliminated at this stage of the competition. There is no pointing fingers.”
Mbappe also received support from the wider football community, with Brazil icon Pele among those saying: “Keep your head up, Kylian! Tomorrow is the first day of a new journey.”