Latest Trending News

France Edges Out Portugal on Penalties to Secure Euro 2024 Semi-Final Spot

Hamburg: France has secured a place in the Euro 2024 semi-finals after a dramatic penalty shootout victory over Portugal, winning 5-3 in Friday’s quarter-final match at the Volksparkstadion in Hamburg. This victory sets up an exciting semi-final clash against Spain.

The match was notable for its cautious and tense nature, particularly in the first half, which saw no shots from inside either penalty box. This marked only the second European Championship match since 1980 to hold such a statistic. Despite the slow start, both teams had moments in the second half that could have sealed the victory in regular time.

The game came alive after the hour mark. Portugal created two quick chances, with Mike Maignan making consecutive saves from João Cancelo’s shot and Cristiano Ronaldo’s backheel. France responded with Ruben Dias making a crucial sliding block on a Kolo Muani shot, and Eduardo Camavinga missing a significant chance by shooting wide.

With neither team finding the net in regulation time, extra time seemed inevitable. Cristiano Ronaldo had a prime opportunity to score in the first period of extra time but sent his shot high over the bar. Moments later, Ousmane Dembele evaded Pepe and found himself in a scoring position but chose to pass to Kylian Mbappe, who failed to convert the chance.

Portugal continued to push, with Rafael Leao’s shot blocked and João Félix hitting the side netting in the second period of extra time. The game remained goalless, leading to the decisive penalty shootout.

Ousmane Dembele opened the shootout with a successful spot-kick for France, matched by Cristiano Ronaldo for Portugal. Youssouf Fofana and Bernardo Silva both scored their penalties, keeping the score level. Jules Kounde then converted France’s third penalty, but João Félix became the first to miss, hitting the post.

With the pressure mounting, France held their nerve. The subsequent penalties were calmly converted by both sides, but France’s early advantage proved decisive. The shootout victory propels France into the semi-finals, where they will face Spain in what promises to be a thrilling encounter.

Comments are closed.