Monday, 11 July 2016

Euro2016 Final: France 0-1 Portugal (AET)

The tears of Ronaldo. Tears of misery and despair after he was forced to hobble off in the first half following a clumsy challenge from Payet that seemed to aggravate the thigh injury that Ronaldo suffered in pre-tournament training.

The tears of joy as hobbling along the sidelines barking orders like an assistant manager he witnessed the marvelllous Eder from outside the area, drill the unstoppable beyond the outstretched arms of Lloris. The Portuguese held out for the final ten and more tears flowed when the final whistle was blown.

What had gone before was to the script of many finals. Keeping it tight. Don’t make a mistake. Don’t be the villain. Payet risked that with the injury to Ronaldo that threatened to extinguish all interest in the game. Portugal’s star man gone, surely they would fold. Not so. Instead, France misfired. Griezmann the golden boot winner would not have won it had he repeated tonight’s performance during the rest of the tournamnent. An easy header that should have been buried, the most glaring miss. Gignac mis-hit a shot onto the post and across the six yard box. But chances were at a premium for both sides until Eder… oh Eder… how you fired yourself into Portuguese legend status.

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