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Tuesday, July 16, 2024

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Portugal out of Euro 2024:

Image Source: REUTERS


In a dramatic Euro 2024 quarterfinal, France prevailed over Portugal in a tense encounter that ultimately ended goalless after 120 minutes, leading to a decisive penalty shootout. Theo Hernandez became the hero for France, scoring the winning kick as they triumphed 5-3 on penalties. This victory sets up a semifinal clash with Spain, marking a crucial moment for Les Bleus, who have endured recent heartbreaks in shootouts, including the 2022 World Cup final and the last Euros against Switzerland.

Kylian Mbappe, who had been a central figure throughout the tournament, experienced a mixed outing. Despite wearing a protective mask due to a recent injury, he struggled to find his best form and was substituted during extra time. Nonetheless, France’s penalty takers, including Bardley Barcola, Ousmane Dembele, Youssouf Fofana, and Jules Kounde, displayed nerves of steel to convert their chances, securing France’s passage to the next round.

On the other side, Portugal’s Joao Felix was the lone player to falter, hitting the post with his penalty attempt, which proved costly as Portugal bowed out of the tournament. This match likely marks the end of Cristiano Ronaldo’s illustrious Euro career, having participated in six editions but failing to add to his record goal tally in Germany.

The game itself was characterized by cautious play and missed opportunities, with both teams struggling to break the deadlock during regulation time. France, known for their defensive solidity, countered Portugal’s sporadic attacks effectively but also found it challenging to impose themselves offensively. The encounter only briefly sparked to life in the second half, with both teams creating chances that were either saved or missed.

As the dust settles on this intense quarterfinal, attention turns to France’s semifinal showdown with Spain, where they aim to capitalize on their hard-fought victory and continue their pursuit of Euro glory. For Portugal, despite their disappointment, the tournament highlighted the challenges and unpredictability of knockout football at the highest level.

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