Portugal beat France in extra-time to claim glory at Euro 2016

A goal from Eder proved the difference between the two sides

Eder, POrtugal, France,

Image: Martin Meissner / AP/Press Association Images

Eder put his name in the history books as his winning goal made Portugal Euro 2016 champions for the very first time as they defeated hosts France.

Overcoming the blow of losing captain Cristiano Ronaldo to injury in the first half of normal time, Eder took a shot from long range  that found the bottom corner of the net.

Twelve years on from losing Euro 2004 on home soil to Greece, they became the underdogs to defeat a favoured host nation. 

France made a bright start as they pressed Portugal early in the first few minutes.

But it was Portugal who engineered an early sighter after four minutes when a long ball out from the back found Nani between the two centre-backs but the Portugal forward couldn't keep his shot down.

There was an early scare for Portugal after eight minutes as Cristiano Ronaldo went down after a clash of knees with Dimitri Payet.

Antoine Griezmann then forced an excellent save from Rui Patricio with a looping header, with the Portugal keeper tipping it over the bar.

The pace of the game dampened slightly after that frantic start.

Portugal's Cristiano Ronaldo sits on the pitch after a challenge during the Euro 2016 final soccer match between Portugal and France at the Stade de France in Saint-Denis, north of Paris, Sunday, July 10, 2016. (AP Photo/Frank Augstein)

There were more concerns over Ronaldo after that as he went down again with the same knee injury and required lengthy treatment and strapping on the sidelines before resuming play.

But on 23 minutes, the captain and star of the team acknowledged that his night was over and had to be stretchered off in tears to be replaced by Ricardo Quaresma.

On 32 minutes, a lively Mousa Sissoko turned his marker well in the box but his shot did not beat Patricio at the near post.

With Portugal settling into a 4-1-4-1 formation after losing their captain, a tight first half finished scoreless.

France's Moussa Sissoko, center, reacts after missing a scoring chance during the Euro 2016 final soccer match between Portugal and France at the Stade de France in Saint-Denis, north of Paris, Sunday, July 10, 2016. (AP Photo/Frank Augstein)

The second half continued in the same vein as the first as both sides tried to keep things tight.

Griezmann briefly found space on the run down the left channel and had a shot at go 57 minutes in but Patricio was behind it all the way to make the save.

He then had a glorious chance on 65 minutes. Substitute Kingsley Coman lofted in an inch-perfect cross from the left for Griezmann, but the forward could only head the opportunity just over the bar.

Olivier Giroud then forced Patricio into an excellent with a shot from the left as France pressed forward again.

France's Antoine Griezmann, right, and Oliver Giroud react after Griezmann missed the goal during the Euro 2016 final soccer match between Portugal and France at the Stade de France in Saint-Denis, north of Paris, Sunday, July 10, 2016. (AP Photo/Michael Sohn)

Portugal had two great chances with 10 minutes to go of normal time. First Nani's cross almost drifted over Lloris and into the net but the France keeper saved. Quarsema then put the rebound on target with an acrobatic bicycle kick but Lloris was right behind it.

Four minutes later at the other end, Sissoko fired a shot from long range which Patricio did well to tip away.

And just as the game entered stoppage time, Giroud's replacement Andre-Pierre Gignac almost won the game for France.

Receiving the ball in the box, the striker turned Pepe expertly and shot past Patricio, only to see his attempt come back off the base of the near post.

Thus the game went to extra-time.

Pepe had a header that just went wide but it would not have counted because of offside.

Portugal had another great opportunity with another headed opportunity from a set-piece with Eder guiding his effort towards goal but Lloris in the right place to see it away.

France's Samuel Umtiti, right, and Portugal's Eder battle for the ball during the Euro 2016 final soccer match between Portugal and France at the Stade de France in Saint-Denis, north of Paris, Sunday, July 10, 2016. (AP Photo/Petr David Josek)

Two minutes after extra-time resumed, Portugal won a free-kick at the edge of the France box and Raphael Guerreiro's attempt rattled the crossbar.

But a minute later, Eder showed strength, before running at the France defence.

He then unleashed a speculative long shot from range which incredibly beat Lloris on its way to the bottom corner.

Portugal then hung on as France struggled to break them down. Victory meant Portugal also won Euro 2016 with just one win in 90 minutes when they beat Wales in the semi-final.