French to Beat Portuguese to Rule Europe for Third Time

France celebrates after beating Germany in the semi final.

France beat Portugal en route to its second European title in 2000 and one thinks that the French will defeat the Portuguese to clinch their third continental championship when the teams meet in Sunday’s UEFA Euro 2016 final.

Having emerged unscathed from the tough half of the UEFA Euro 2016 draw, France is entitled to the warm favouritism that bookmakers have bestowed upon the home side. France’s 2-0 UEFA Euro 2016 semi-final victory over Germany meant that the French won the half that featured not only the Germans but also the English, Italians and Spaniards.

Portugal, which will make its second European Championship final appearance 12 years on from losing 0-1 to Greece in 2004, did not win any of its first five UEFA Euro 2016 matches in normal time before it scored two goals in four second-half minutes to beat Wales 2-0 in the semi-finals. Portugal has achieved what 22 UEFA Euro 2016 participants wished that they had managed and, clearly, it is not a bad team but one cannot rate the Portuguese ahead of France.

France is available at odds of +106  with 888Sport and Unibet to pip Portugal without requiring either extra time or penalties and that strikes one as fair value in light of their respective UEFA Euro 2016 performances and the results of two friendlies between the sides in the last two years.

Last September there was a Lisbon friendly between Portugal and France that ended in a 1-0 win for the French. Mathieu Valbuena replaced Moussa Sissoko in the 80th minute and he scored the only goal of the game five minutes later. France had hosted Portugal in October 2014, the French winning 2-1 in Paris thanks to Karim Benzema and Paul Pogba goals before Ricardo Quaresma netted a consolation from the penalty mark.

The match statistics of those two recent matches between France and Portugal suggest that the teams are relatively even and, therefore, if one is looking for a way to support the French at chunky odds then backing them to win the UEFA Euro 2016 final by one goal at odds of +250  with several bookmakers, including BoyleSports, Paddy Power and SkyBet, is a possible play. Interestingly, Portugal has not lost any of its last 19 games by more than one goal and that was a shock 0-2 home friendly loss to the Cape Verde Islands.

Mark Clattenburg will referee the UEFA Euro 2016 final in an appointment that will displease the English powerbrokers who did not nominate him as their country’s representative – he is only present because UEFA picked him to accompany Martin Atkinson. Over four and a half cards is trading at odds of -109  with 888Sport and Unibet and that is one’s third betting selection pertaining to the UEFA Euro 2016 decider.

Clattenburg has brandished two, four and five cards in his three UEFA Euro 2016 matches. Clattenburg has had a season to remember having refereed the English FA Cup final and UEFA Champions League final. Clattenburg showed six yellow cards in the English FA Cup decider between Crystal Palace and Manchester United and he cautioned five players in the UEFA Champions League decider between Atletico Madrid and Real Madrid. Please note that one has collated Clattenburg’s cards in normal time of those five games because, for settling purposes, bookmakers only count 90 minutes.

France qualified automatically for UEFA Euro 2016 due to it being the host nation but Portugal had to earn its place in the tournament. Clattenburg officiated Portugal’s UEFA Euro 2016 home qualifier versus Denmark and the English referee brandished five yellow cards, including two to Portuguese players in the last 10 minutes of their side’s 1-0 success.

Tips Summary

France to beat Portugal
Sunday 10th July, 20:00 GMT
Odds:  +106

France to beat Portugal by a One Goal Margin
Sunday 10th July, 20:00 GMT
Odds:  +250

France v Portugal – Over 4.5 Cards
Sunday 10th July, 20:00 GMT
Odds:  -109

Euro 2016
Euro 2016 Final

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