The night of the May 28 this year would have been one of the most painful in the short career of Antoine Griezmann. Not only had the French striker lost the Champions League final with Atletico Madrid on penalties to their eternal rivals, but Griezmann had missed a spot kick in normal time which could have completely changed the game.
Six weeks later though, the forward is on the cusp on continental glory once more but standing in his way is the man who denied him European success with his club, Cristiano Ronaldo. Real Madrid's No.7 scored the decisive penalty in the shoot-out to ensure Los Blancos lifted the European Cup for an eleventh time and while he did not have a great game in the final, he came good at the vital moment.
In this tournament Ronaldo has once more delivered at crucial moments, scoring twice in the final group game to keep his team from being eliminated and also in the semi final, where his goal and assist proved decisive against impressive underdogs Wales.
Yet it is Griezmann who has been the star of Euro 2016 so far, with the 24-year-old netting six times inlcuding twice against Germany in the semi-finals. In six matches in the European Championships he has netted six goals, compared to Ronaldo's record equalling total of nine goals in 20 games at the finals. If he continues in a similar fashion Griezmann will write himself into the history books of the competition sooner rather than later.
Both players' performances in the previous round have increased expectations on them, with Ronaldo and Griezmann showing us exactly what they are capable with Paddy Power making the Atletico Madrid forward the favourite to score at 11/10 (2.10).
It will be interesting to see how the French forward deals with the pressure of a major final, with his only other appearance in a showpiece ending in disappointment. Ronaldo meanwhile boasts a wealth of experience having played in 14 finals for club and country over the last 12 years.
The man from Madeira has netted in six of those finals, a conversion rate of 46 per cent, which is an extremely healthy record when talking about goals in major finals. Ronaldo is offered at 2/1 (3.00) to add to his tally of goals while he can also be backed at 11/2 (5.50) to open the scoring, while Griezmann is offered at 7/2 (4.50) to break the deadlock.
Naturally Portugal are the outsiders which is why Griezmann is a shorter price to score, yet Ronaldo remains his side's main goal threat and the price of 3/1 (4.00) for him to score the Iberian outfit's first goal looks tempting. The 31-year-old has a fine record in finals and if Portugal are to find the back of the net, then he looks like the most likely source of goals.
|Cristiano Ronaldo to score Portugal's first goal at 3/1 (4.00) for a 1pt stake with Paddy Power|