To win the European Championship final on Sunday, Portugal will need something it has never managed before at a major tournament: to beat France. On the bright side for Portugal, the teams' three previous encounters at the championships or World Cup were all close.
To win the European Championship final on Sunday, Portugal will need something it has never managed before at a major tournament: to beat France. On the bright side for Portugal, the teams’ three previous encounters at the championships or World Cup were all close.
Here is a quick look at their shared history:
FRANCE 1, PORTUGAL 0
World Cup semifinal; July 5, 2006, in Munich, Germany.
Zinedine Zidane’s 33rd-minute penalty is all that separates the sides in a tetchy encounter marked by Portuguese anger against referee Jorge Larrionda. Portugal’s Ricardo Carvalho trips French striker Thierry Henry. Glistening with sweat, Zidane fires the ball inside the right-hand post of goalkeeper Ricardo Pereira. Moments later, Portugal wants a penalty when Cristiano Ronaldo goes down, claiming a push by Willy Sagnol. After the final whistle, Portugal captain Luis Figo sarcastically applauds Larrionda and Portugal coach Luiz Felipe Scolari wags a finger at the officials. France loses the final to Italy, with Zidane ending his career with a red card for head-butting Marco Materazzi.
FRANCE 2, PORTUGAL 1
Euro 2000 semifinal; June 28, 2000, in Brussels.
Again, Zidane is the difference, with an extra time ”golden goal” penalty awarded for Portuguese defender Abel Xavier’s handball. Incensed Portuguese players threaten Austrian referee Guenter Benko and Belgian linesman Roland Vannylen. Benko sends off Nuno Gomes, who gave Portugal a 1-0 lead in the 19th minute, subsequently cancelled out by Henry’s 51st-minute goal. UEFA later suspends Xavier, Gomes and Paulo Bento for a combined total of almost two years from its competitions. A UEFA statement says, ”Almost all the Portuguese players ran towards the assistant referee who was pushed and insulted. An unidentified Portuguese player spat at him” and Gomes ”gave the referee a violent push in the chest and Abel Xavier grabbed him by the arm.” France beats Italy in the final.
FRANCE 3, PORTUGAL 2
Euro 1984 semifinal; June 23, 1984, in Marseille, France.
On his way to scoring nine goals – a record total that Ronaldo equaled at Euro 2016 and could break in Sunday’s final – France captain Michel Platini sinks Portugal with a last-gasp winner. In normal time, Rui Jordao equalizes for Portugal with a 74th-minute header that cancels out Jean-Francois Domergue’s left-footed opener in the 24th minute, and then puts Portugal ahead with a volley past French `keeper Joel Bats in the eighth minute of extra time. But Domergue strikes again 16 minutes later and Platini delights the Stade Velodrome crowd with his 119th-minute winner. France beats Spain in the final at the Parc des Princes, where Platini opens the score in the tournament host’s 2-0 victory.