France seeks healing final victory vs Portugal

So France beware: Ronaldo is ready to break your spirit and he'll enjoy doing it too.

Leading the charge for Portugal will be captain Cristiano Ronaldo, with much of the pre-match build-up focusing on the prospect of a personal duel between himself and France's tournament top scorer Antoine Griezmann. But he expects them to cope with that better than Portugal did more than a decade ago. He scored a brilliant backheel against Hungary, fired Portugal in front with a superb header against Wales and a scuffed shot from the Real marksman was enough for Nani to get his leg to the ball and double Portugal's lead.

A Spidercam attached to the stadium roof will give a bird's eye view of the game across the field of play, and ground-level cameras will run on rails behind each goal.

Which tactical formation will France deploy?

Didier Deschamps was as calm as you like when grilled by the media in Paris.

With penalties looming, Portugal right-back Abel Xavier blocked a goal-bound shot from Sylvain Wiltord with his hand and, after lengthy Portuguese protests, Zinedine Zidane swept in a golden goal penalty to seal their final passage. "Fortunately we have the majestic midfield duo of Matuidi and Pogba, and in attack a certain Antoine Griezmann".

Portugal will aim to erase harsh memories of the Euro 2004 final defeat to Greece, which left the Real Madrid striker crying on the pitch. "But it's one thing to be favourites and another to win and I believe that Portugal will win", he said. But Deschamps, who won 103 caps, preferred to praise his players.

Sagna added: "Sure, he's an exceptional player, but I have to play against top players every week so it doesn't scare me". But Portugal remain a country without a title, and the bitter memories of 2004 are still felt.

"Superstars like him relish these situations - the pressure that goes with it brings the best out of him, when other players falter".

All in all, Portugal have lost the last 10 matches to France in all competitions, and while it's hard to see that trend coming to an end on this occasion, they cannot entirely be ruled out.

But there will be no victory parade if France win, the officials warned. Previously, their six finals ended in draws over 90 minutes with 5 in the competition plus a 0-0 against Spain.

France, who have beaten Portugal in their past 10 confrontations since 1978, have previously lifted the trophy in 1984 and 2000.

"There has never been a Portugal-France final, this history is in semi-finals and I believe Portugal will make history in the final", he said.

From Givors, near Lyon, he was picked up by Lyon at the age of just nine and seized his chance in the first team following the departure of France number one Hugo Lloris to Tottenham Hotspur in 2012.

"Yes, because I'm representing my people, my country". Portugal managed to beat Wales, while the hosts produced a magnificent performance to beat Germany. The attacks began at the Stade de France where suicide bombers detonated devices after failing to force their way into France's match against Germany. "If his form continues France will win the tournament".

Since France again beat Portugal to reach the final of the 2006 World Cup it has been a decade of disappointment and controversy in major tournaments. He looked relaxed as he discussed the possibility of winning the Euros on home soil - what would be a career highlight even for a man of his accomplishments. "When we got here, we visited the Eiffel Tower and the Champs-Elysees and we started preparing ourselves psychologically for this match".

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