And France is through to the finals. It looks like the Euro 2016 is going to be one grand party, with the hosts having the most fun.
In Marseilles yesterday, France shocked world champions Germany, handing them a 2-0 defeat, and repeating its historical feats of 1984 and 1998, of reaching the final of a football tournament played on home ground.
Cristiano Ronaldo of Portugal, the other team that has made it to the final, will have to counter the brilliance of Antoine Griezman, who scored both the goals for France in a thriller that had spectators on their feet, willing their team to the spectacular victory.
Two years ago, Germany had knocked the French side out of the World Cup, but on Thursday, it was sweet revenge for France, whose footballers lifted their country out of the gloom that has pervaded it since the terrorist attacks in Paris.
Till almost the end of the first half of the match, Germany seemed to be in control of the field, holding possession most of the time, but Antoine Griezman finally found a chink in their armour and managed to score, ripping down their cloak of invincibility.
Weakened by the loss of Boateng to a hamstring injury, the Germans were tense in the second half, while their opponents, egged on by the home-crowd’s deafening cheers, were standing firm against any attack. Griezman struck again in the 85th minute, scoring a second goal.
By the time the final whistle blew, the crowd had erupted in wild cheers and flag-waving, with ‘Vive Le France’ being the only cry that could be heard. Sunday’s game will decide who’s going to lift the Euro 2016 trophy, but for the French, their team are already the champions.