Portugal wins Euro 2016 behind Eder's extra-time finish


In a match where Cristiano Ronaldo was forced to exit due to injury and France dominated the majority of the game’s chances, Eder proved to be the difference for Portugal in Sunday’s final.

Portugal captured its first major tournament title at Euro 2016, knocking off hosts France, 1-0, in extra time. Eder had several key chances after making his way onto the field in the second half, but none bigger than his winner in the 109th minute.

The French looked the more dangerous side early on, and nearly took the lead after 10 minutes. Winger Dimitri Payet played in a perfect cross from the left wing to Antoine Griezmann, but the Atletico Madrid attacker’s header was tipped over the bar by goalkeeper Rui Patricio.

Portugal’s talisman, Ronaldo, didn’t have the afternoon he would have liked, as the 31-year-old battled injury from the early moments of the match. After coming out of a challenge with Payet in the eighth minute with what appeared to be a left leg injury, the Portuguese star tried to play on despite a noticeable limp.

Ronaldo exited the match in the 25th minute, being replaced by veteran winger Ricardo Quaresma.

The speed of play slowed down in the second half, however, Olivier Giroud found his best chance of the match with a quarter hour remaining. The Arsenal striker hit a powerful effort towards the bottom corner, but Patricio managed to keep the attempt out.

Portugal responded with their best opportunity during regulation, when Quaresma’s shot was headed for goal but French keeper Hugo Lloris made an acrobatic stop to keep the match scoreless.

Second-half substitute Andre-Pierre Gignac had an opportunity to stamp his name on the match, after striking the post in the 92nd minute, but his chance wasn’t enough to beat the Portuguese keeper.


Few would have picked Eder to decide a major tournament final, but Rui Patricio‘s seven saves kept Portugal in Sunday’s match and performed at a high level throughout the tournament.


The 109th minute will go down in history as one of the greatest moments in Portuguese soccer, after Eder’s winner gave A Selecao their first major championship.


Antoine Griezmann was brilliant for France at Euro 2016, capturing the competition’s Golden Boot award, however, the Atletico attacker and his teammates couldn’t find the net when it counted the most.

  • UclaBruinGreat

    Ronaldo’s legacy is pretty much complete. Obviously he could use a World Cup win but at least he has a Euro Championship. The fact that he came off injured means nothing. It is not his fault a French player injured him.


    • Rob

      Except for the one thing he wanted the most: to be considered better than Messi.
      Never going to happen.


    • M

      Agreed, a perfect way to begin icing his cake of a career. He was instrumental in their road to the final and hade multiple trademark jaw dropping moments. The challenge from Payet I felt was a bit malicious as well, although sometimes that’s how you need to send a message to the opposition early on. The final started at a blistering pace, wish it would have stayed that way throughout.


      • Mitch

        Right, he could have played through it, but simply chose not to participate in the final. We see this all the time from the world’s best. Nice one Mikey.


    • Xantiro

      This game epitomized why it makes no sense to hang a players legacy on whether or not they were able to win a championship. The fact is, Ronaldo did less in this game than Messi did in the three finals Argentina lost. And yet somehow, the fact that Portugal were able to win the Euro final completes Ronaldo’s legacy. If anything you could argue Ronaldo wasn’t important to Portugal because they could win it without him (that’d be an asinine argument but it makes more sense than saying this completes his legacy). Both Messi and Ronaldo are two of the greatest players to play the game. Whether their country of birth was able get the lucky breaks necessary to win an international championship has little to do with their greatness.


  • Mike

    I am proud my paternal grandfather is part Afro Portuguese. With Blacks ancestors from Guinea Bissau and white Portuguese ancestors from the Azores. The face a Afro Portuguese player like Eder who was born in Guinea Bissau winning the cup makes me proud. Viva Guinea Bissau and Portugal!


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