SAINT-DENIS, Sporting Alert – Starting lineups for the final Euro 2016 quarterfinal match between France and Iceland at Stade de France on Sunday.
After the game France striker Olivier Giroud said: “We’re very pleased, we scored five goals. Although we did concede a couple, we had a lot of fun and are pleased with our performance. We’re going to try to erase a few of these small defensive mistakes, because against Germany we’d pay a heavy price.”
Teammate and star midfielder Dimitri Payet added: “We managed to score a lot of goals, we scored quickly compared to previous fixtures.
“We have a lot of quality going forward. This was our best performance. We worked all week on Iceland’s strengths, we were aware of that.”
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One too many?
Iceland captain Aron Gunnarsson said: “We are disappointed but incredibly proud. It’s been an amazing experience. A lot of hard work has gone into this and the fans have been fantastic.
“[Speaking after the final whistle] They are still singing, it’s unbelievable. The French have all left. They are still here. It just shows what we put into this.
“The first half was terrible, we managed to play better after the break. We decided we could not leave like that. We will learn from this. We are just starting.”
7 – France v Iceland is the first EURO game with 7 goals since Netherlands v. Yugoslavia (6-1) in 2000. Prolific.
— OptaJohan (@OptaJohan) July 3, 2016
GOAL! FRANCE 5-2 ICELAND (Bjarnason 84)
Iceland keeps fighting and has been rewarded with another goal though Birkir Bjarnason. France leads Iceland 5-2.
GOAL! FRANCE 5-1 ICELAND (Giroud 59)
France running away with this game and it’s Arsenal forward Olivier Giroud, who latched onto Dimitri Payet’s free kick to head home for his second goal of the match. France leads Iceland 5-1.
GOAL! FRANCE 4-1 ICELAND (Sigthorsson 56)
Kolbeinn Sigthorsson find the back of the net for Iceland and they are not giving up. France leads Iceland 4-1.
GOAL! FRANCE 4-0 ICELAND (Griezmann 45)
Antoine Griezmann grabs another goal for France with a neat-looking chip over the keeper. France leads Iceland 4-0.
GOAL! FRANCE 3-0 ICELAND (Payet 43)
Dimitri Payet drilled a low left shot into the corner of the net to knock the wind out of Iceland. France leads 3-0.
GOAL! FRANCE 2-0 ICELAND (Pogba 20)
Iceland is in trouble right now, as Paul Pogba, who hasn’t scored for his country in almost two years, out-jumped his marker to add another goal for France. France leads Iceland 2-0.
GOAL! FRANCE 1-0 ICELAND (Giroud 12)
The Arsenal forward has given the host country the perfect start to this quarterfinal, timing his run well to latch onto a through ball and beat the goalkeeper. France leads Iceland 1-0.
9 – Olivier Giroud has scored nine goals in his last nine starts for #FRA. Instinct.
— OptaJean (@OptaJean) July 3, 2016
“I think Ronaldo would only swap shirts with himself if he could” – Taylor Twellman.
France make two changes to the starting side from the last game for today battle.
— UEFA EURO 2016 (@UEFAEURO) July 3, 2016
Following the suspensions of Adil Rami and N’Golo Kante, Samuel Umtiti and Moussa Sissoko have been drafted into the starting XI to play at centre-back and in midfield.
With Sissoko coming into the side, it should all France to play a little more freely, since Blaise Matuidi will be the only holding midfielder in the team.
Expect to see both Antoine Griezmann and Dimitri Payet roaming a lot more, which should create more chances for striker Olivier Giroud.
Meanwhile, Iceland named the same starting XI for the fifth game in a row at Euro 2016, as they seek to shock the hosts, the same way they did against England.
The host nation has not been consistent in the tournament, and Iceland will certainly be backing themselves to create an upset in the Paris suburb of Saint-Denis.
France: Hugo Lloris, Bacary Sagna, Samuel Umtiti, Laurent Koscielny, Patrice Evra, Paul Pogba, Blaise Matuidi, Moussa Sissoko, Antoine Griezmann, Dimitri Payet, Olivier Giroud.
Iceland: Hannes Halldorsson, Birkir Saevarsson, Kari Arnason, Ragnar Sigurdsson, Ari Skulason, Johann Gudmundsson, Aron Gunnarsson, Gylfi Sigurdsson, Birkir Bjarnason, Kolbeinn Sigthorsson, Jon Dadi Bodvarsson.