This game was madness, but Portugal came out with a not so expected win. Keep reading I swear it’s fun!
FIRST HALF— The match took place in Paris, France in the Stade de France where France dominated most of the match. They had a number of chances in the first half, but couldn’t find the back of the net. They definitely had a home field advantage…obviously, but I mean every time a Portuguese player touched the ball they would get booed. In the 4th minute Portugal almost scored as Cedric hit a long pass over the top to Nani, who ran past Koscielny, brought the ball down and with one bounce volleyed the ball 15 yards out but it goes over. Minute 6 Fonte attempted to clear the ball with a header, but it went to Sissoko who blasted a volley (way over the ball) from 20 yards out…that could’ve been where France got the one up on Portugal. Griezmann had an opportunity in the 7th minute from the left side of the box, he half-volleyed to the near post, but it went wide. Now you can see why I said France dominated the first half… it’s been opportunity after opportunity. In the 8th minute this is where Ronaldo first starts to experience pain…yes the EIGHT minute a tough challenge from Payet, Ronaldo seemed to be in a lot of pain, but it was “treated.” Patricio had been like a brick wall this whole game so far saving every single one of France’s shots, in the 10th minute Pepe slipped up and gave the ball to Payet who then found Griezmann where he headed the ball to goal but Patricio with a leaping save denied him and then again on the corner where he comfortably saved Giroud’s header. You can see where this game is going right? So, fast forward to the 16th minute Ronaldo seemed to be having trouble from that challenge earlier by Payet. Ronaldo was in tears not sure if it was from pain or he knew his final was over.
He is able to walk off though, but I didn’t think he was okay to continue… he obviously thought otherwise. He comes back on in the 21st minute with his knee heavily strapped. France not seeming to care have yet another opportunity, Sissoko storms through the center and hits a brutal left-footed shot, but it deflects over the bar. Now, this part of the match is where Portugal fans probably thought their chances of winning where very, very, VERY slim. Ronaldo barely being able to run managed to get a left-footed cross which was “cleared” by Umtiti, but Joao Mario volleys it from 20 yards’ out. Look away Ronaldo fans! LOOK AWAY! Ronaldo is furious he knows his final is over as he can no longer take the pain. He threw his armband to the ground, he needed to be stretchered off the field, but before leaving he hands the armband to Nani. Exiting the field Ronaldo is applauded by both fans and Deschamps. Ricardo Quaresma comes in to replace him. Minute 30 Sissoko AGAIN with another run, but his cross was deflected for a corner. In the 34th minute guess who? If you guessed Sissoko you are absolutely right! This time he nutmegged Adrien Silva and with a shot, but it was blocked by Patricio. Honestly, if there was such a thing as “Man of the Half” Sissoko would take it for this first half.
Cedric is then booked for a knee in the back of Payet. Forty-first minute NOT Sissoko, but Payet with a shot which was blocked by Pepe and cleared Sagna’s follow up… this could be it for Portugal as Joao Mario gets a breakaway passing Pogba, but Matuidi is there to clear for a Portugal corner, but it’s nothing. Two minutes of stoppage time added and Portugal had a chance in the 47th minute Joao Mario’s crossed to Nani, but it’s wide. Half time! Finally! After a crazy, crazy first half…this final is certainly living up to expectations.
SECOND HALF— Are you guys ready for this craziness? France had kickoff this time, but ya know let’s skip to the more interesting parts. Minute 50 Pepe who’s had an exceptional game so far intercepted Payet who had just beat out to defenders. Now for my all-time favorite part of any football match…PITCH INVADERS HAHAHA minute 55 when a fan came on the pitch and delayed the game…might have been Portugal’s good luck charm to be quite honest. A France substitution as Kingsley Coman replaced Dimitri Payet in the 59th minute. Not even a minute later substitute Coman with a very nice touch which allowed Griezmann to erupt into the area and take a low shot, but that’s wasn’t a problem for Rui Patricio. Sixty-second minute…nothing creative happening yet, but Joao Mario is booked for a trip on Giroud. Oh man, oh man Pogba had a beautiful long pass to Coman on the left side who then came into the infield, crossed it and found Griezmann…who then proceeded to head the ball wide 6 yards from the goal. THAT COULD HAVE BEEN IT.
Portugal’s first voluntary sub, but their 2nd of the match as Joao Moutinho replaces Adrien Silva. Man of the half so far is super-sub Kingsley Coman who played a one-two with Olivier Giroud and crossed it into the box, but there was no one there. Substitution in the 78th minute for both sides Andre-Pierre Gignac (WOOHOOO) replaces Olivier Giroud and Eder comes on for 18-year-old Renato Sanches. With only 10 more minutes to go of regular time Nani mishit a cross which almost went in, but Lloris hit it away perfect set up for Quaresma who scissor-kicked it, but it’s nothing…again. Now that Eder is in Portugal has gone back to their 4-1-4-1 form and put captain Nani on the right wing. Portugal was now attacking way more these last minutes they were desperate for a goal. Minute 82 Nani with a chance 25 yards out with a left-foot shot but it was driven over the bar. Another France opportunity in the 84th minute from Sissoko (of course) who takes a shit to the right of the goal, but it’s blocked by Patricio. I’m honestly running out of words to use and space…so let’s fast forward to the stoppage time in the second half. Andre-Pierre Gignac…this could’ve been it he received a cross at near post from Evra where he then turned away from Pepe TWICE and past Patricio…BUT IT HIT THE POST in the 2nd minute of stoppage time. That’s all for regular time. Time for extra time!
FIRST HALF EXTRA TIME— Let’s keep it short and simple here…all the drama happens next half (:
SECOND HALF EXTRA TIME—Still no sign of Martial for France. Minute 106 Moutinho down after high foot from Matuidi and was booked, Portugal conceded a free kick. One hundred and eighth minute Koscielny booked for a handball which appeared to have hit Eder’s hand. Free kick for Portugal again 25 yards out…and GUERREIRO HITS THE CROSSBAR! It went over the wall and to the right side of the goal, but it hit the bar! Here we go! Eder scores the opening goal for Portugal in the 109th minute!!!! Blasted a low shot to Lloris’ right, who couldn’t get there in time.
Last France sub, Sissoko off and Martial on. France seemed to be getting really frustrated at this point, none of their chances could find goal and they were running out of time. Portugal on the other hand have had chance after chance since the goal. Last two minutes Guerreiro had a cramp…or something and was off the field, Ricardo Quaresma took over in the left back position…madness! 2 minutes of stoppage time were added and Portugal had possession. Eder won a free-kick in the first minute, but nothing came out of it. The whistle is blown and Portugal are your champions of Europe! Ronaldo is in tears…happy tears of course. All of the hard work Portugal put into this tournament has finally paid off! Ronaldo who is still limping goes up the steps with his teammates and lifts the Euro 2016 trophy.
Post-match interviews took place and Pepe had just a few words to say: “There was a lot of suffering, a very intense game. We fought very hard.” Yes, you did Pepe, very much deserved win. Eder also had a few things to say: “Eder believes Ronaldo had something to do with him scoring “[Ronaldo told me I would score the winning goal for the team. He gave me this strength, this energy, and it was vital.” Crazy game right? Give me your opinions. Do you think it would have ended differently had Ronaldo not picked up an injury or if they’d gone to penalties without Ronaldo? What about if they’d gone to penalties with Ronaldo? I NEED TO KNOW!! Comment down below or on my Instagram post or reply/quote my tweet with your responses ((((: