Which Portuguese player will dedicate himself to scoring for CSC against the Blues?

Which Portuguese player will dedicate himself to scoring for CSC against the Blues?

We will not tell stories. Alongside the France-Portugal match that qualifies this Friday evening in Hamburg for the quarter-finals of the European Championship 2024, the foam party in the sanatorium seems like the height of bliss. However, in the middle of dry matches, which are crossed while remaining “in place, well balanced”, a drop of happiness sometimes manages to appear.

For the Blues, it is often called “CSC”, since two of the three unfortunate goals scored by Didier Deschamps' team in Germany were scored by an opponent (the other being a penalty from Kylian Mbappé): Austrian Maximilian Wober in the opener and Belgian Jan Vertonghen in the eighth.

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So we can quite imagine that the French still benefit from a helping hand from fate (and from the Portuguese) to reach the semi-finals. We have envisioned five scenarios, with the sixth still possible. After all, among its five pawns, the Seleção also benefited from two “private possessions” (thanks to the Czech Ruben Hranák and the Turkish Samet Akaydin).

Diogo Costa

The Porto goalkeeper is Portugal’s life insurance at the Euros. After the Slovenian’s three shots were blocked in the eighth minute, he looked to have taken the whole cage from Mbappé, in extra time of a match that was declared desolate. The Blues captain prepares to take the penalty awarded for a disputed handball by Ruben Dias. But his sweat-stained mask slips and obstructs his vision as he shoots.

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Kiki blindly strikes inside Diogo Costa's left post. Unfortunately for him, the Portuguese goalkeeper is still on the right. The ball bounces off his back and ends up in the net, as happened with Bruno Belloni against Carlos in the France-Brazil match in the 1986 World Cup quarter-final, and Deschamps promised to pay the federation a free cat from the canton of Ax-les-Thermes.

baby

The centre-back may have been born in February 1983, like Rafael van der Vaart, Bacary Sagna and Isabel Ithururu, but he still managed to put Marcus 'Kasper' Thuram in his pocket. After he was taken off on the hour mark, Interist made way for Randal Kolo Muani, who was no more dangerous for Lusitanian Duncan MacLeod.

We are heading gently towards penalties, after 119 minutes of existential emptiness, when the Parisian, sent in by N'Golo Kanté on the right side of the Portugal area, misses his own shot. But not Verton's left knee… Pepe, who takes Diogo Costa on the wrong foot. “France-Belgium, Ctrl C, Ctrl V”…

Bernardo Silva

“But what am I doing here?” the Manchester City player says to himself every time the camera catches his tired face. The anachronistic beauty looks like an intruder lost in this amazing match, passing two metres away, up and back, alternating dangerous distances, sometimes to touch, sometimes to six metres.

Salvation is near, because after this French corner, Francisco Conceicao will replace him. Bernardo's thoughts escape to a world where football is more beautiful. They even escape a lot, because for the first time in the Euros, Griezmann correctly scores a free kick. The former Monaco player suddenly comes back to reality and, with a sudden gesture like when your cat wakes you up, turns his head towards the ball. A bounce on the nose and the goal. Goodbye Germany.

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Nelson Semedo

The teams are level at the end of the second half of extra time. It is time for the final substitutions, made more to give the survivors a breather before the penalty shootout than to attempt a final stroke of madness. And so it is Nelson Semedo’s moment, who replaces Joao Cancelo in power-saving mode for a good hour.

We are not asking the Wolves full-back to impose the decision, just to keep his right-hand path correct for the few seconds remaining. Not like against the German meteor Robin Gosens at Euro 2021 in short… no foul, no foul, no foul… Come on, just one last back pass to secure the goalkeeper. Quiet. Except that Diogo Costa comes forward to ask for the ball, he is no longer in his cage. Portugal offer France the same CSC that Turkey offered them in the group stage.

Cristiano Ronaldo

Few assists (almost), many winners (almost)… Against a French defense as friendly as the goalkeeper of Alcatraz, CR7 had a pretty good game. But the almost forty-year-old lives to make history. He is playing his sixth Euro (a record) and has already planted 14 pawns (another record). Only, he has been silent since the start of this tournament in Germany, and that bothers him. Jan Oblak deprived him of this pleasure in the round of 16, and Mike Maignan does not seem more determined to give a farewell (?) gift to the Portuguese legend.

For a few minutes, France are pressing a little. The man from Madeira comes to put his 1.87m tallness into the wall, from a 25m free kick from Griezmann. The shot goes wide but hits the skull of young star Mbappé. This sport can be cruel to its idols.

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About the Author: Germano Álvares

"Desbravador de cerveja apaixonado. Álcool alcoólico incurável. Geek de bacon. Viciado em web em geral."

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