Finals Analysis9th Jul 2016 |
I don’t think it’s unfair to say that we have one quite clear favourite for Sunday’s final between France and Portugal. That favourite is of course France. There is a number of reasons why they have to be considered favourites.
The most obvious factor is that they are the host team and are playing in front of their own audience. In the beginning of the tournament this can be a source of pressure just as much as it can be an advantage, but when the home team has reached the final it turns into a pure advantage. The supporters are definitely the 12th man on the team for games like this.
The second factor is the squads. Portugal of course has the biggest star player of the tournament in Christiano Ronaldo, and he seems to have found his good form. If Portugal is to have a chance they are fully dependent on his skills. Together with Nani and Sanches, this is a real possibility. But France is stronger in every link compared to Portugal. Anyone who doubts this can just look at the squad and compare them link by link and player to player. There isn’t a single link in the Portuguese squad that is stronger than the French counterpart.
The final and most important factor is the performances of the teams so far in the tournament. With 13 goals in six matches, France has scored more than any other team so far. Portugal has scored eight goals so far. This shows a big difference in the average number of goals scored per game. For France the number is 2,17, while for Portugal it is 1,33. France has also been more efficient than Portugal. Portugal has had 112 attempts, while France has had 103. Both have had 36 attempts on target. I think it’s fair to assume that the most efficient team will win on Sunday.