- France LeaveS it Late Again to Advance to Last 16 -
UEFA EURO 2016 - GROUP STAGE (GROUP A)
|France||2 - 0||Albania|
France left it late again, defeating Albania 2-0 with two goals in the 90th minute. With the win, France becomes the first team to mathematically clinch their place in the Knockout Stages.
It was another uninviting performance from the hosts who needed a late goal to defeat the “outsiders” Albania in their second match of Group A. After an uneventful first half, the Albanians created the first real chance of the game, hitting the post 5 minutes into the second half. Albania’s chance was a wake up call to the French and the hosts took over the game, pressing in Albania’s half. As chance after chance went by, including Giroud’s header that hit the post, the game was heading for a surprising 0-0 draw. However, similar to France's first game against Romania, the breakthrough came in the final minute. Griezmann was left unmarked in the box and his header from Rami’s cross gave France the 1-0 lead. Payet, who was the hero against Romania, added a second in the 6th minute of stoppage time, giving France the 2-0 victory.
The win secures France’s position in the Knockout Stages. On the other hand, Albania was handed their second loss from two match and will need to defeat Romania to have any hopes of qualifying as one of the best 3rd placed teams. France will play second placed Switzerland in the final group match for top spot in Group A.
Image Source: theguardian.com