HAMBURG: France and Portugal took each to extra time and penalties in their UEFA Euro quarter-final but there was none of the excitement which marked the night’s other tie in Stuttgart.

Indeed, the two teams – Kylian Mbappe, Cristiano Ronaldo at al – created a mere handful of half chances between them over the 120 minutes

Given such attacking ineptitude it was almost remarkable they finally did remember the route to goal when it came to the shootout. Someone always has to fail and in Hamburg, while France converted all five penalties, that was the fate of Portugal’s Joao Felix. The 24-year-old slid Portugal’s third kick against keeper Mike Maignan’s right-hand post so Les Bleus could march on by a margin of 5-3.

Mbappe had to be substituted in extra time after an earlier whack to his face, covered with a mask due to a broken nose, so he was unable to take part in the shootout.

Portugal had the better of the shot-sky match. Bruno Fernandes and Vitinha were both denied by goalkeeper Mike Maignan before France’s Randal Kolo Muani had a shot deflected inches wide by Ruben Dias.

Moments later, Eduardo Camavinga should have put France ahead when he dragged an effort beyond the far post from close range.

But extra time was needed and when the moment came, Portugal’s talisman Ronaldo stabbed a cutback from Francisco Conceicao high over the bar before their luck ran out after a second shootout in consecutive games.

France will face Spain in the semi-finals in Munich on Tuesday.

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