Portugal beat France 1-0 to win the Euro 2016 (their first major trophy), and I must say, it was not because they were particularly awesome. As a matter of fact, I am quite surprised they got to the final at all. They drew all their group stage matches, ad finished third in their group, for crying out loud. Even France with their uninspiring show in the group stages was a better sport. When Portugal struggled to a draw with Iceland, Ronaldo called their mentality “small”.
Now look, everyone has to endure their hearty grins and loud whoopees because they played a brand of football branded as “dull”. Who’s got small mentality now? They merely won because France failed to score; I believe that if they were more efficient in their finishing like they have been throughout the tournament, we would have been singing another song right now. And frankly, that other song would have been more appealing to the ears, because France were the better team in this final.
France got to the finish line, then blew it. From Antoine Griezmann’s poor finishing to Kingsley Coman’s miss, they just dropped the ball. Literally. They bossed possession (like everyone expected them to), but failed to score (unlike everyone expected). I was expecting at least one goal from France; if the match had lasted until penalties, France would have owned that mother. But they let it slip from their fingers like butter through a hot grate, so they must rue that day. But they did play good hosts; at leas they got to the final. This reminds me of Greece in 2004, which is certainly the mother of all coincidences, because Portugal faced Greece in that final; though in that final Portugal lost through the same score line to a team that played “dull” football. Looks like they picked up some lessons.