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The Euro 2016 final on Sunday sees a match between hosts France and Portugal that will unleash a clash between one of the world's greatest players ever Cristiano Ronaldo and would be pretender Antoine Griezmann.

A penalty awarded seconds before half-time caused turmoil in the German camp.

Gifted midfielder Paul Pogba lacks consistency but has been decisive on several occasions, notably against Germany with the move which led to Griezmann's second goal. Everybody would have said, "Deserved win for Germany".

Apart from the opening exchanges when France tore forward on a wave of noise from their home crowd, Germany totally controlled the first half.

Lloris believes that display underlined their improving maturity and, while rejecting the notion his team are favourites against Portugal, reckons the future looks bright under coach Deschamps. If you had it in your own hands, it hurts even more.

Griezmann's early weak effort after cutting inside extended Manuel Neuer down to his left but did not seriously trouble the German goalkeeper, but aside from a couple of comfortable free-kicks the play was predominantly in one direction.

Germany were punished for some sloppy first-half finishing and failed to convert any of their 18 shots on goal, despite 68 per cent possession. But France held firm for a famous and thrilling victory. "We had the best team in the world opposite us".

"'We played our best match tonight at the Euros but it didn't help". Now the country appears to be behind them again. "I can't blame any player for that", Low added.

"On the bench, there is a frustration in not taking part, but I can't do that anyway".

The 25-year-old is also out to eclipse yesteryears French superstar Michael Platini's mark of nine goals in European Championships.

Pepe and Ronaldo already got the better of Griezmann in a major final six weeks ago, when their Real Madrid team beat city rival Atletico in the Champions League final.

"I'm pleased to have taken that decision and to have scored".

Bastian Schweinsteiger has thanked Germany's fans for their support during Euro 2016 and shares their frustration at not being in Sunday's final.

The psychological barrier was broken with victory in the November 13 friendly which was soon forgotten when suicide bombers detonated explosives outside the Stade de France at the start of a series of deadly attacks in Paris. "As host nation, and because we've knocked out Germany, that doesn't give us extra powers". Pepe said Portugal were strong because they want to win.

"But we told each other we would never give up".

" People were anxious the format might not work but it has worked", Kallen said.

Germany faced Ukraine, Poland, Northern Ireland, Slovakia and Italy on their way to the semi-finals while France took on Romania, Albania, Switzerland, Republic of Ireland and Iceland on their way into the last four.


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