The French team celebrate after the UEFA EURO 2016 semi final match between Germany and France at Stade Velodrome in Marseille, France, July 7, 2016. [Photo/IC]
MARSEILLE – Atletico Madrid forward Antoine Griezmann scored twice to send hosts France into the Euro 2016 final by beating world champions Germany 2-0 here on Thursday.
It was the first time for France to play in last four of a major tournament and enter a final since they raised the Euro 2000 trophy.
Griezmann, 25, has scored six goals in Euro 2016 to be the top favorite for the Golden Boot. He was voted as the Man of the Match.
His first goal came in the last second of the first half from the spot. German midfielder and captain Bastian Schweinsteiger made a silly move in the 46th minute when he raised his right arm in the box to handle French defender Patrice Evra’s header on the last corner kick.
Italian referee Nicola Rizzoli pointed to the spot and showed a yellow card. German midfielder Mesut Ozil was also booked for his protest.
Griezmann stepped up coolly to make the 1-0 lead for France by sending German keeper Manuel Neuer the wrong way.
The second goal came in the 72nd minute when a mistake from German defender Joshua Kimmich in the box was pounced upon by French midfielder Paul Pogba who beat substitute defender Shkodran Mustafi with clever footwork. Although the cross was parried by Neuer, Griezmann was first on the scene to prod home his sixth goal of the tournament.