France vs. Ice land

For a meaningless second half, that was pretty enjoyable. France goes through to meet Germany; Iceland has done them satisfying even in a 5-2 defeat. The XI who began all five games is already legends of Icelandic football. France will wish to attain the same status in their own country in the next seven days.

France vs. Ice land

Thanks to Iceland for making football fun in the last few weeks. And thanks to whichever higher power command that France will face Germany in the semi-final because that will be a grand even before a ball is kicked. Thanks for your emails and company; I’ll leave you with this from Niall Mullen.

This was Iceland’s worst nightmare become reality. A brave team of battlers being exposed by the superior quality of a ruthless opponent.

Hugo Lloris-6

Easy save from Sigurdsson in opening minutes and not excessively tested thereafter, although yet beaten twice from close range. Fine save from Ingason after the break.

Bacary Sagna-6

Like his left-sided equivalent, Evra enjoyed time and space to venture further forward. A little too relaxed at the back at times.

Samuel Umtiti-6

Quite the match for an international debut but his team-mates did their best to make things as easy as they could. Picked up a booking in the second half.

Laurent Koscielny-6

Coasted through proceedings for the main part, proceeding well with Iceland’s strong start before the forwards took over. Taken off early to protect him from suspension.

Patrice Evra-6

Juventus man got forward well, enjoying the spaces left as Iceland was penned in for extended periods. Can expect a busier night on Thursday.

Paul Pogba-7

Towering header for the second and an all-action display from the flamboyant Frenchman. Put in implements and displayed his fine passing range to inspire the success.

Blaise Matuidi-6

Fine pass over the top set up Giraud for the opener and sent another shot wide. Did a lot of the pressing and harrying to allow team-mates to cause damage further up field

Moussa Sissoko-6

Muscular Newcastle midfielder came in for the suspended Kante and made his case for a semi-final position with a composed showing. Shot wide a couple of times with the game already won.

Antoine Griezmann-8

Has really come to the fore in the knockout rounds. Followed his double against Ireland by helping the second and third goals before easing through the Iceland middle for his fourth of the finals.

Dimitri Payet-7

West Ham man got the hosts’ campaign up and running in group stages and played a part here. Made his own space for the third and set up Giraud for the fifth.

Olivier Giroud-8

First-time finish after 13 minutes got the ball rolling and tied up well with Griezmann, setting up the fourth. The Strong header for his second before going off.

Iceland

Hannes Halldorsson-5

Might have done better with Giraud effort but beaten by the speed of the move. Deliberately to come offline for second and too easily beaten for fifth. Shame, as he has had a fine tournament.

Birkir Savarrsson-4

A thankless task as the French enjoyed the run of the flanks and struggled to contain the hosts wingers.

Kari Arnason-5

Competed well, but just not as quick to the ball or in his decision making as some of his opponents.

Ragnar Sigursdsson-6

The fine display against England and started well here before it all settled around him. Stood up well to French forwards but outclassed in the end.

Ari Skulason-5

Stuck to his task but fighting a losing battle as the French turned up when it mattered and made England’s approach last week look all the meeker.

Johann Gudmundsson-5

Unable to compete with quick feet and trickery of French onwards as Iceland faced the first real test of the finals. Did not stop pressing and got forward on occasion.

Aron Gunnarsson-5

Unable to cause as much danger with his throw-ins, the French having learnt England’s lesson. Strong tackles on Payet and did not surrender the ghost as some players might have.

Gylfi Sigursson-7

Swansea man got the first shot of the game in but was unable to continue his, or his team’s, momentum. Kept at his task though and set up the first consolation.

Birkir Bjarnason-7

Shot wide from distance as Iceland started with intent. Left his leg in on Giraud for a booking and then headed his side’s second in final minutes to deserve further recognition for tournament’s surprise package.

Kolbeinn Sigthorsson-6

Displayed predatory instincts, scored a consolation in the same style that he found the net against England. Taken off in final minutes for veteran Eidur Gudjohnsen.

Jon Dadi Bodvasson-5

Volleyed over halfway through the first half with the score at 2-0 but left unique for extended spells. Replaced at the interval.

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