Thursday, August 18, 2022

Heartbreak for Koscielny & Giroud, Ramsey makes UEFA XI

It was heartbreak for Laurent Koscielny and Olivier Giroud last night as Portugal beat France 1-0 in Paris to win the European Championships.

The Arsenal duo were both selected to start by Didier Deschamps but couldn’t help the class of 2016 emulate the achievements of their predecessors of 1984 and 1998 by winning on home turf.

The hosts, who started the game favourites, enjoyed an early boost when Cristiano Ronaldo was forced off with a knee injury midway through the first half. At least it looked that way on paper.

For all their possession France couldn’t find a way through Portugal’s crowded defence and grew increasingly frustrated as the game wore on. Rui Patricio denied Antoine Griezmann in the first half and then made a smart stop to deny Moussa Sissoko’s long-range effort after the break.

On a night when he was marshalled by the impressive Pepe, Olivier Giroud couldn’t make the most of his one clear-cut chance. His left foot effort was hard and true but Patricio was equal to it. Andre-Pierre Gignac replaced the Arsenal man soon after and should have won the game in stoppage time only for his scuffed effort to hit the post.

Galvanised by the near miss, Portugal looked more confident in extra-time and stretched play courtesy of the running of Nani, Ricardo Quaresma and Joao Mario. Finally, in the 109th-minute, substitute Eder broke the deadlock. The former Swansea man shook off Laurent Koscielny, one of France’s best players on the night, before hammering a low drive past Hugo Lloris from 25-yards.

Les Bleus were stunned and despite having 11 minutes to get back into the game couldn’t muster a clear-cut chance. On the touchline Ronaldo’s tears of frustration turned to tears of joy as Mark Clattenburg’s final whistle called time on the tournament. Koscielny hit the turf disconsolate; neither he nor Giroud chose to wear their runners-up medals when presented with them.

A sad end to a positive tournament for both men. They now head off on holiday and will likely miss the start of the new domestic campaign. Get some rest boys, you deserve it.

This evening on Instagram, Koscielny reflected: “It’s obviously with great bitterness that I write to you this evening. I just wanted to say it was a great adventure, a great experience to be part of and we’re proud to be Blue.”

In other news, Aaron Ramsey has been included in UEFA’s team of the tournament for EURO 2016. The Arsenal midfielder scored once and made four assists in five games as Wales reached the semi-final. It’s just a shame he was suspended for the showdown with Portugal.

UEFA team of the tournament EURO 2016 (4-2-3-1): Rui Patrício (Portugal); Joshua Kimmich (Germany), Jérôme Boateng (Germany), Pepe (Portugal), Raphaël Guerreiro (Portugal); Toni Kroos (Germany), Joe Allen (Wales); Antoine Griezmann (France), Aaron Ramsey (Wales), Dimitri Payet (France); Cristiano Ronaldo (Portugal).


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Cornelius P. Snuffington III

In a boring tournament, it’s appropriate, though disappointing, that the team with the most boring games emerged victorious. What a cunt Ronaldo is, he sure did his best to make sure it was still all about him as his teammates won the game. And he of course still had to strip his shirt off. That was a very disappointing result.


Hey man, give Portugal there dues. Greece and Denmark both won the tournament playing even more defensive football than them. And you can bet your bottom dollar, nobody would be complaining if England won the tournament that way.

Tasmanian Jesus

I cant say i recall Denmark defending their way to the title. They had some attacking power in that team.

Tim Gold

Yeah, i remember that Denmark forward who was a much better attacker than Ronaldo.


That would be Flemming Poulsen…. Denmark convincingly beat Germany in the final. Granted, they won their games on the counter. But just how did Ronaldo make the Euro XI ???

Tasmanian Jesus

Brian Laudrup. He was, at least in that tournament.

Scott P

My biggest problem with Portugal winning isn’t even their style of play. I can understand when people say that football is about results and not always how you win, but the fact is also that Portugal’s results left a lot to be desired. 3 draws in the group stages saw them through. If they scored a goal and then parked the bus and won every/most games 1-0, I could even respect that (even while disliking it), but their results were bad!

That and I can’t stand Ronaldo and Pepe…


exactly, i would prefer to see England win with that kind of football

nobody will remember u to play beautiful football and went out the game early


It seems you either need to have a really amazing team like Spain a few years back or France in 2000 or you have to play like Portugal did, if you actually want to win.


Terrible game, terrible tournament. A fitting end, I guess.

Also things went wrong for France after Giroud got subbed.

Cornelius P. Snuffington III

Giroud had a good tournament in all I’d say. He came in under a bit of pressure and he and Griezmann really teamed up well together. He had that one laughable moment when his lack of pace got exposed, but that’s just not his game and wasn’t indicative of his performance.

Vincent Kompany's Forehead/Jamie Vardinho

Wound me up when the commentators talked about his speed. He’s a target man, they aren’t known for their speed, and rightly shouldn’t be judged for it. If he’s judged for his aerial ability, strength and hold-up play then fair do’s.

It’s like getting pissed @ Walcott for having no aerial ability.


Or just no ability


To be fair to him he does sometimes run in behind and score. Not likely to do it against top defenders with a long way to run though.


I agree. The first goal against Iceland comes to mind.


Totally agree. Giroud should have stayed on.


Giroud is very good in playing against those kind of football

i meant he was good to play against those teams who sit deep


Happy for Ramsey and hope he can carry his form into next season. Thought Kos and Giroud both had a shout to make the XI.


Kosc has won 83% of his duels after the semis. The best stats of all CB. Thought he was at least as good as Pepe but Pepe has won it so they’ve chosen him. Boateng was outstanding during this tournament so he definitely deserved his place.

Rozza the samourai

After MarK Clattenburg gave him a totally mistaken yellow card, he refrained from tackling Eder fiercely or even wrestling him down. That led to the winning goal. From there, couldn’t be in the UEFA XI. He should have taken the red. It was second half of extra time.

Arsene's handkerchief

Agreed, you could see he held back in the challenge and at the back of his mind he was wary of the yellow (although stupidly given) he had just received a couple of minutes before. But at the same time, you make the point, second half of extra time with 10 minutes to go, just take him out…


This is a classic example of Hindsight 20-20. Now that we know Eder scored, its easy to say “he should’ve taken the red”, but there were atleast 10 full minutes left in the game (Eder scored in the 109th minute) . To go 1 player down is definite suicide, specially because the french were looking tired.

The same people would’ve said “Koscielny has time and again gotten red cards/own goals, he almost got his team disqualified from WC and now this. Pity france didnt have CB options for this tourney”.


Pepe did really well in the finals. He is a nutter but he always seemed to be in the right place and made what seemed like a ton of clearances.


Where’s Bonucci though? Thought he stood out for Italy.


Ozil should be in the team ahead of Cristiano or Allen.
On the whole, I enjoyed this euros. Show,it wasn’t filled with free flowing football, but tactically, it was top notch…like a game of chess.
Deschamps made the wrong subs…wouldn’t have replaced Giroud at that time with Gignac.

Rozza the samourai

He was right to replace him but it should have been Martial. It was about having a player who still has some gas in the tank. Giroud clearly didn’t recuperate after the game with Germany.

Coq au Vin

Et merde!

Someone's Something

Remembering that time when Schweinsteiger lost the CL- and EC-final in 2012 and had to get serious help from a psychologist to get him out of that depression and then go on to win the CL- and WC-final a couple of years later.

Kos and Giroud, please feel free to do the same thing 😉


In other news, Ronaldo making the team of the tournament is an absolute joke. He had like one game, in the rest he was terrible.

Rozza the samourai

Remember Messi best player of WC 2014 and not Muller?


Dislike Ronaldo but he made the difference for Portugal, let’s be honest!

Scott P

Yeah, he allowed them to scrape through a couple of their torrid matches, but let’s not pretend he was a great maestro this tournament. Did absolutely nothing for several games too.


Wow! Loads of thumbs down?
If we took his goals out of the tournament would Portugal have won?
And could anyone else have delivered that header?…


He wasn’t payer/maestro. Nobody said he was!

Bould's Eyeliner

you’re just in the wrong neighborhood to praise ronaldo.


We haven’t really seen eye to eye Paul in recent times, however I will go with you on this one, and share the load of thumbs down in this neighborhood 🙂 I thought as well that Ronaldo behaved differently for the final, as opposed to being an arrogant and egotistic, spoiled brat. I felt genuinely gutted when Payet injured him and he had to go, as Portugal don’t have so many star players like France. And coming back later and cheering his team, acting like a coach, I did not see it as making it about himself but as an… Read more »


We haven’t really seen eye to eye Paul in recent times, however I will go with you on this one, and share the load of thumbs down in this neighborhood 🙂 I thought as well that Ronaldo behaved differently for the final, as opposed to being an arrogant and egotistic, spoiled brat. I felt genuinely gutted when Payet injured him and he had to go, as Portugal don’t have so many star players like France. And coming back later and cheering his team, acting like a coach, I did not see it as making it about himself but as an… Read more »


Germany and France cancelled each other out in a tiring match for both teams. Such is the reality of tournaments, you need tremendous luck to win. Portugal finishing 3rd in their group got the easier side of the table, while top teams like Spain fucked up by finishing 2nd. In another year they would have been out at the group stage. Thanks Platini.

Vincent Kompany's Forehead/Jamie Vardinho

I loved seeing that Sagna still has gas in the tank,

Consistently one of the PL’s best right back’s, if not the best up until Bellerin grew into an awesome player.

Was sad to see Sagna go, he was, for his talent and status defensively, on low wages (£70k) and would’ve stayed @ the club if given a salary to match his worth.


as a Gareth, I am stunned that Bale was omitted. Anti Spurs bias rules Europe. this site is particularly bad.

Cheeto Slick

Lol. Well done.


Now that Ronaldo is injured, I’m assuming morata is not getting sold, assuming that he was meant to be resold in the first place.

Neil #2

No idea, but I would certainly like some transfer news. glad the Euro is over — was far from entertaining.

Does all of this mean that Ramsey/Giroud/Kosciely/ won’t be ready for the start of the season?


Probably. Wenger wants everyone to have four weeks’ vacation, meaning they won’t be back in training until August 8 at the earliest. It’ll be pretty tough to be ready for the first match on August 14. Unless they do like Alexis and spend their vacations dribbling up and down sheer cliffs while bench pressing the Titanic.


Deschamps blew it, needed to bring on defensive midfielder, they were getting stretched, Giroud was OK, payet was awful from first minute, Evra couldn’t cross a Zebra crossing, glad for Portugal but Ronaldo is an utter twat

Armchair Expert

Opposition team parking the bus – Check.
Their goalkeeper having the game of his life – Check.
Your team taking the foot off the pedal and not being able to create much – Check.
Missing a few half chances – Check.
Giroud’s substitution – Check.
Dubious decision (Yellow for Koscielny) – Check.
And finally, the opposition team scoring an undeserved goal against the run of play – Check.

Not sure if France or Arsenal


Football is a motherfucker.


Read Sagna’s interview after the match, it’s as if he’s a Gooner again.

Cheers Bac!


Deschamp got a bit over anxious to win it within regulation time. Should have kept GIroud on till at least full time. He linked up well with Greizzman. Also I’d have kept Payet on but issued him instructions to pull wider as Sissoko (impressive as he was) tended to push through too much in the middle. With both (older) fullbacks cautious of Nani and Ronaldo/Queresma, there was not enough width for France and they tended to funnel in which was easy for Potugal to defend albeit France had more than several good moments. Still can’t begrudge Portugal exactly as they… Read more »


Prices are inflated for strikers right now. There[s too much heat. We saw Hulk got o China for 47m and now Pelle for 12m which is going to put a further squeeze on supply, the likes of United (out of CL)are willing to spend over the odds for players ditto City and Chelsea. When you factor in PSG may need to replace say Zlatan, Madrid thinking of an aging Cronaldo (and injured), Bayern may join the fray, you realise how difficult it is for us to sign a striker. Move to soon and you will alert the rest of the… Read more »

broken red army

well deserved for Portugal. they almost did the impossible with an out of form (then injured) Ronaldo. team spirit the hunger and the fight is so underrated in football. something we have lacked for a long time. lack of “quality” (not Flamini) leaders on pitch comes to mind still I always thought Wenger could do much better with a younger assisstant not only for the new ideas but some fire on the bench.

sixteen swans over ainola

And everyone in the media is still talking about Cristiano ‘twatface’ Ronaldo. It’s ‘8-page spread’ relentless.

Which is hardly justified for a player that couldn’t-score-for-toffee for most of the competition and sat out more than 90 minutes of the final (again, without any meaningful contribution).

Anyone thinking that football is manifestly just as corrupt as ever and journalists haven’t a clue about a game they’re perceived experts at need look no further for confirmation.

Yeah, Portugal deserved their title just as we deserve our new Prime Minister.

mach iii

I think France choked. It was theirs to lose and they lost it. Portugal played really well trying to stop them from playing. It took a long time to figure out how to break them down, and France had just started to break them down. Then, I think the pressure got to Deschamps and he pulled Giroud off. Giroud is not the fastest player, but he has pristine quality touches. He enables those around him to play, and those around him like Coman and Griezman are small players that need someone like him up front. Gignac hadn’t played nearly as… Read more »


France did an arsenal in the final!

How many times did we see that last season?


NOt sure why everyone is hating on Ronaldo.. He’s been nominated the best player and has won the cup for Real Madrid and now the Euro for his own country..he does his country proud and I’m sure if it was your country, all of you wouldn’t be bitter..let them enjoy this victory for fucks sake! They played really well against France and if I remember correctly, THEY NEVER LOST A GAME!!!!!!!


That’s pathetic. How could Ronaldo be on that team? Only by reputation not on the basis of his performance on the tournament

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