On penalties | France beat Portugal and advance to the semi-finals

France booked the second ticket to the semi-finals of the European Football Championship.Euro 2024“, by defeating its Portuguese counterpart on penalties, after the regular and extra time ended in a goalless draw (0-0), in the match between the two teams that was held on Friday evening (July 6), as part of the competitions of the quarter-finals of the continental championship.

The match was played at the Volkspark Stadium in Hamburg, Germany, and was refereed by the famous English referee Michael Oliver.

The first half ended in a goalless draw (0-0), as caution prevailed in both teams’ performance, given the value of the match and its elimination nature. Figures from the international “SofaScore” network indicate that the expected goal rate in the first half was 0.07 for Portugal, compared to 0.08 for France.

From the sadness of the German national team players after losing to Spain

The cautious performance continued in the second half, before the team rose up. Portugal Offensively, French goalkeeper Mike Maignan stood as a “blocking wall” against 3 consecutive close shots, by Bruno Fernandes, Vitinha and Cristiano Ronaldo, respectively.

Portuguese left winger Rafael Leao caused major problems for France right back Jules Kounde, while full backs Joao Cancelo and Nuno Mendes seemed more free on the attacking side.

France felt anxious and began to exchange attacks with Portugal. A valuable opportunity arose for the team’s striker, Randal Kolo Muani, who appeared alone with Portugal’s goalkeeper, Diego Costa, before firing a powerful shot that hit one of the “Sailors” defenders and went out for a corner kick.

France continued their attack, with Ousmane Dembele, who came on in the second half as a replacement for Antoine Griezmann, curling a shot just wide, while Portugal coach Roberto Martinez brought on Nelson Semedo and Francisco Conceicao for Cancelo and Bruno respectively.

The second half ended in a goalless draw, forcing the two teams to go into extra time of two halves. Portugal seemed to be in a better technical position in the first extra half, while the second half began with the captain being replaced. French teamKylian Mbappe; where the coach of the French, Didier Deschamps, threw in the rising winger Bradley Barcola.

Mbappe did not suffer an injury before his exit, and observers suggested that “exhaustion” was the reason for the change, especially since the new Real Madrid striker suffered a broken nose and missed some of the French national team’s training sessions during the group stage.

Penalty kicks decide the battle

The score remained goalless until Michael Oliver blew his whistle, announcing the end of the match in regular and extra time with a goalless draw, and resorting to penalty kicks, which the French team won in its favor, with a score of 5-3.

The French players benefited from the missed kick by the Portuguese player, Joao Felix, while they excelled in scoring their five kicks, to secure victory and a ticket to the semi-finals.

France to face Spain in semi-finals

The French national team is scheduled to meet its Spanish counterpart in the semi-finals next Tuesday (July 9), at the Allianz Arena in Munich.

The Euro 2024 quarter-finals will conclude tomorrow, Saturday, with Switzerland and England meeting in Dusseldorf, while Turkey and the Netherlands clash in the German capital, Berlin.

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