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France vs Iceland a few quick thoughts

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  • The fairytale has ended for Iceland as they were emphatically beaten by hosts France last night
  • It was a 5 star performance by Didier Deschamps’s  side as they finally showed why showed many had them pegged as pre tournament favourites
  • Although it was early July it was very unseasonal weather at the Stade De France but that certainly did not dampen the hosts spirit
  • With both Adil Rami and N’Golo Lange out through suspension Iceland may have fancied their chances of another upset but truth be told they were never in the game
  • After the heroics of last Monday it was almost as if the Icelandic players had nothing left in the tank
  • Oliver Giroud got France off to a perfect start when he latched onto an inch perfect through ball to then control and shoot low past the Icelandic keeper to put the hosts in front
  • France had certainly learned from the mistakes that England made last week
  • Everytime there was a long throw, the French defence were making sure that if the first ball wasn’t won then at least a runner wouldn’t be collecting the knock on and having an effort on Goal
  • Iceland had to find a way back into the game but the night would have got worse when Paul Pogba doubled France’s lead after a powerful header from a corner was thumped into the net
  • Even then you had a feeling it could be game over and in fairness it pretty much was
  • The result was all but assured just a minute before the break when Dimitri Payet rifled home from the edge of the area to make it 3-0
  • The night would them go from bad to worse when Antoine Griezmann scored his fourth if the tournament and France’s fourth of the night
  • A crushing 45 minutes, Iceland had well and truly frozen
  • With the game done and dusted the second half was somewhat of a procession
  • But there would be a glimour of hope for Iceland after the break
  • Gylfi Sigurdsson fired in a cross with it being met by Kolbeinn Sigthorsson at the near post
  • His shot was too quick for Hugo Lloris to deal with and at least Iceland were now on the scoresheet
  • But France’s 4 goal advantage would then be restored when Oliver Giroud headed home a free kick
  • Hannes Halldorsson was in no man’s land as Giroud jump highest to head home into an empty ney
  • The 5th goal meant Deschamps had seen enough and made substitutions so as to see his key players not pick up needless suspensions it injury
  • With the tempo of the game winding down, Iceland would go in to make the scoreline slightly more respectable as Birkir Bjarnason headed home to make it 5-2 on the night
  • That would be the end of the scoring and also Iceland’s time at Euro 2016
  • But they will go home as heroes and rightfully so
  • The win over England will be an unforgettable result for both nations although for very different reasons
  • As for France they now go into the Semi Finals and a meeting with Germany
  • A match which in all honesty is worthy if the final itself
  • But the draw means that will not be the case
  • Both sides are one game away from the final which one will fall at the final hurdle on Thursday?
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