Hosts France ensured a place in the final of the Euro 2016 with a victory over world champions Germany in Marseille. Antoine Griezmann, the tournament’s top scorer scored a brace as France beat Germany for the first time in a major tournament since 1958.
Germany had kept possession of the ball most of the first half and looked fairly comfortable until German captain Bastian Schweinsteiger got clumsy in the box in an attempt to mark Patrice Evra from a French corner. The Manchester United midfielder leapt with an arm and handled the ball, giving referee Nicola Rizzoli no choice but to award a penalty. Griezmann stepped to take the penalty right on the stroke of half time, it was a good one as it sent Manuel Neuer the wrong way.
Germany continued to press all the way and France captain, Hugo Lloris was in fine form as wave and wave of German attacks were launched. But after some un-German-like passing around their own area, the ball fell to Paul Pogba who held up play well on the right before sending to Olivier Giroud. Neuer was indecisive as he jumped to catch the ball rather than punch it. The ball fell kindly for Griezmann who stabbed the ball home with 18 minutes left to play. Germany were outdone by this time, more so, by their own defending as both goals could have been avoided.
The Germans continued to rally round to find a way back into the game. Joshua Kimmich then hit the woodwork for Germany and also saw a header brilliantly saved by France keeper Hugo Lloris – but it was a little too late for the world champions as the hosts booked a place in Sunday’s final at the Stade de France were Portugal would be waiting.