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Euros 18: The Final Countdown

Popularity 4Viewed 3984 times 2016-7-9 19:50 |Personal category:Sport|System category:News| Euro 2016 Final, France, Portugal, Ronaldo

My last few words at the end of Euros:17 post were "France can do it" - that referred to reaching the final and they did beating Germany 2-0.  I will have a last few words at the end of the post too! First we need to look at France's opponents - Portugal. They are in their second Euro Championships Final this century - they lost as hosts in 2004. So they know what it feels like.

Ronaldo was only 19 and entering his second year at Manchester United. He cried on the pitch but it was his home nation and the 1-0 loss was to a low ranked Greece - though they played well in that tournament - a team who did not even qualify to be in France this year. He might have thought that it was his only chance after Spain dominated in 2008 and 2012 - he was playing in Madrid himself by then.  Yet he is back and has that second chance, although against the fancied team on their home soil. Soocer is a funny game though and Ronaldo has a huge incentive to score. 

Ronaldo's goals this tournament have put him on equal top of all time Euro Champiuonships scorers at 9 goals - he shares it with Michel Platini of France. Platini has not been there to watch the tournament after the Court of Aribtration for Sport has backed the FIFA judgment that Platini's payment from FIFA then leader Blatter was unfair and a conflict of intetests. He has a four year ban from the game. His colleagues will want to keep Ronaldo quiet. However, one more goal will put Ronaldo ahead on his own and three goals ahead of England's Alan Shearer in third place.

Could the outcome be that Ronaldo gets this honour by scoring but France still win the Final?   I think France have several goals in them and Griezmann is after this year's Golden Boot award. He will want to stay ahead of Ronaldo (he leads by 6 goals to three right now!). The weight of expectation is on France but they have been carrying that throughout. We will know at 3 am on Monday, China time zone. France can do it!

(Opinions of the writer in this blog don't represent those of China Daily.)




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Comment Comment (8 comments)

Reply Report HailChina! 2016-7-12 05:44
Come on ColinSpeakman. I want to say something funny about the French losing.

.....That's gotta hurt?
Reply Report HailChina! 2016-7-28 05:07
I feel as though your Euro coverage is incomplete without a write up on the final. I was on the edge of my seat waiting for your take.

I think you are a good sports writer ColinSpeakman.
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