Friday, 17 June 2016 00:00


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Euro 2016

Euro 2016 hosts France kept their supporters on the edge of the seats against minnows Albania wasting chance after chance only to secure a win late in the match. Goals in the 89th minute by Antoine Griezmaan and by Dimitri Payet in the injury time quelled any hopes of an upset point for the Albanians.

The win made France the first team in the tournament to reach the Euro 2016 knockout stage. For Albania, this is their second consecutive loss and it would take a mathematical miracle for them to progress.

Didier Deschamps opted to keep Griezmann and Paul Pogba on the back following their uninspiring displays against Romania. The move almost backfired with their replacements Anthony Martial and Kingsley Coman failing to make an impact.


Pogba and Griezmann were introduced in the second half and France looked lively once more. The stoppage time goal by Payet was a buffer to the score flattering the hosts but it was a game where they had to fight every minute

The partisan atmosphere didn’t deter Albania from challenging the hosts with a dogged display limiting the French to only a few openings until the last minute dramatics. They had a couple of chances to go ahead too but otherwise at no point did they look threatening

Player of the game

Deschamps may have angered a section of the home supporters by dropping the hugely popular Pogba and Griezmann. The Atletico Madrid striker was ineffective but scored from the first shot on target for the French. However, the star of the show was once again the playmaker Payet who was at his best for the hosts. With a hand in three goals already, Payet is proving to be the real difference for Deschamps’ side.

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