How the Bookies See it
- Winner: France 1/1, Draw 11/5, Portugal 15/4 - Bet365
- Both Teams to Score: No 8/13, Yes 13/10 - BetVictor
- First Goalscorer: Antoine Griezmann 4/1, Olivier Giroud 5/1, Cristiano Ronaldo 11/2 - Boylesports
- Portugal only just scraped through a group that looked so simple on paper. A trio of draws against Iceland, Austria and Hungary only just saw Ronaldo and company make it into the last 16 of the tournament. Portugal continued to ride their luck as they squeezed past a hotly-tipped Croatia side despite only having two shots on target in 120 minutes, and a quarter-final outing saw the Iberians pushed all the way to penalties by Poland. Portugal finally managed to win their first game in 90 minutes as they overcame a plucky Wales side thanks to a towering header from Cristiano Ronaldo and a sliding shot from Nani.
- France took their time to really get going at this tournament. The hosts required late goals to see off Romania and Albania before a goalless draw with Switzerland saw France top Group A. However, the pre-tournament favourites really stepped up their challenge once they fell behind to Ireland in the Round of 16. A come-from-behind win over the Boys in Green and a convincing 5-2 win over fans’ favourites Iceland proved that France weren’t going to be weighed down by the expectation of the home crowd. Finally, the hosts showed why they were so fancied before the start of the competition as they nullified the world champions Germany at the Stade Velodrome and recorded a 2-0 win, a victory that saw Les Bleus secure their place in the final despite having only 32 percent of possession throughout the game.
Portugal finally got the 90-minute monkey off their back after a win comfortable victory against Wales in the semi-final, as Ronaldo - at last - turned in a match-winning performance. The country’s all-time leading goalscorer is 11/2 with Paddy Power to break the deadlock in Sunday’s game and 4/1 with BetVictor to turn in a performance worth of winning Man of the Match. The Real Madrid talisman will need to be on top form to break down the French resistance and is 16/1 with William Hill to net anytime and Portugal to secure a narrow 1-0 win.
The Iberian nation have only ventured this far in the European Championships on one previous occasion, in 2004 when Greece shocked the footballing world by stealing the trophy from under the noses of the Portuguese right on their home turf in Lisbon. Now this batch of players will be looking to perform a Greek-style hit-and-run of their own as they take on the hosts in Paris. Portugal are 15/4 with Betfred to win the game, while William Hill have the team priced at 15/8 to waltz off with the trophy. If you’re feeling a little more adventurous, BetVictor are offering odds of 9/1 that Fernando Santos’ men will break French hearts on penalties.
France have really stepped up their game since they fell behind to Ireland so early in the Round of 16 and come into this game as overwhelming favourites (5/11 with 888Sport to lift the trophy). Les Bleus have finally started finding the net in the first half of games after notching four against Iceland and one against the Germans. A Half Time/Full Time bet of France/France at 12/5 with BetVictor looks very appealing, although if you believe that the hosts will return to their lackadaisical ways in the first 45 minutes, Draw/France is available at 7/2 with Bet365.
France come into this final as the competition’s more deadly team in front of goal. Antoine Griezmann has bagged six of the team’s 13 goals and has even chipped in with two assists, making him a pivotal part of Didier Deschamps’ side. The Atletico man is 4/1 with Sky Bet to grab the first goal and a very generous 7/1 with Paddy Power to wrestle the Ballon d’Or out of the clutches of Messrs Messi and Ronaldo at the end of the year. Things look equally solid at the back, with Hugo Lloris keeping three clean sheets in seven games. The Spurs stopper and French captain is 11/10 with Ladbrokes to keep Portugal out and 4/9 with Bet365 to get his hands on the trophy by the end of the night. The real battle could be between Griezmann and Ronaldo for who secures the coveted Player of the Tournament award. The Spanish-based Frenchman is 8/15, while the Portuguese captain is 7/2 with Paddy Power.
Portugal have not beaten France since 1975, a run that stretches back ten matches, and don’t expect this to change anytime soon. France look to be getting stronger, and a positive display against the world champions in the last round proved that this side can do damage even without the ball. Portugal could be in for a long night.
- Sports.net’s top tip: - France to win 2-0 8/1 - BetVictor
*Please note that odds may fluctuate in the run up to kick-off.