The Euro 2020 ‘Group Of Death’ Group F high voltage fixture between 2018 World Champions France and 2016 Euro Champions Portugal is underway at the Ferenc Puskas Arena in Budapest, with a knockout place in contention for Portugal and a the top place in group to play for France, enticing it to be a peach of a match and one of the highlight matches of this year’s European Championships.
The match has been equally contested right from the beginning as expected, with both teams going neck to neck every minute to come out on top. Either team doesn’t seem to offer even an inch of space for the other, again proving why these two teams are the Champions in the recent editions of two major tournaments.
Portugal and France score a penalty each as the match is level at halftime
Portugal were the first to go ahead, with Cristiano Ronaldo again stepping up in crunch situation and slotting home a coolly taken penalty at the half hour mark.
João Moutinho, who has been given a start in this game after starting in bench for the first two matches, delivered an enticing deep sitted free kick into the penalty area which caused panic amongst the French camp. Les Blues shot stopper Hugo Lloris came out to punch it clear, but instead caught Danilo, who had jumped for the ball with a high elbow to the face. Match official Mateu Lahoz immediately pointed to the spot and Ronaldo stepped up once again to take the penalty. As usual, Ronaldo sent Lloris the wrong way to give his team a foothold in the knockout stages.
It is the fourth goal for the talismanic Portuguese as he now stands at the top of the all time goalscoring charts in the Euros with 12. Ronaldo is also the leading scorer in the current edition with four to his name.
However, Portugal’s joy was short lived when France got a penalty just before half time. Semedo man handled Kylian Mbappe in the Portuguese box and Lahoz blew his whistle to point to the spot, much to the disbelief of the Portuguese players on field. It is a soft decision but VAR agrees with the onfield decision. Karim Benzema stepped up and sent Rui Patricio the wrong way as he netted to the left side, putting France level just before the half time.
All is to play in the next half with more action to come our way.