Ben Wills takes us through the heroes and villains of the Final of Euro 2016.
Eder (Portugal) – Hero
He may be the villain to everyone from France, and most of the neutrals, but Eder will be a hero in Portuguese football forever.
Eder’s goal in the 109th minute – his one and only of the tournament – won A Selecao their first ever international honour to spoil the party for the French, in France.
The 25-yard strike sent Portugal into ecstasy, France into agony and Ronaldo into floods of tears.
Andre-Pierre Gignac (France) – Villain
Oh, how different it could have been. As the game entered the 90th minute Andre-Pierre Gignac turned his marker, struck the ball and…hit the post.
France thought they had won the European Championships on home soil for the second time, but were denied by that cruel woodwork.
Gignac did not help himself later on either when he was offside to deny France a 120th-minute corner to force the game into penalties.
Dmitri Payet (France) – Villain
As much as you may despise Cristiano Ronaldo for his arrogance, we always want the top matches to be blessed with the top players, and Dmitri Payet denied us of that.
The West Ham midfielder clattered into Ronaldo early on in the first half and, despite his best efforts, Ronaldo could not carry on and had to be substituted.
Ronaldo did get his crowning glory at full-time but the final was a pretty tepid 120 minutes of action. We needed a bit of excitement and Ronaldo might have provided it.
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