PARIS:Olivier Giroud scored two goals and set up another as the Euro 2016 hosts France thrashed Iceland 5-2 on Sunday to set up a semi-final clash against world champions Germany.
Giroud fired France ahead after just 12 minutes at a rain-drenched Stade de France with Paul Pogba then heading in his first goal of the tournament to double the hosts´ lead.
Dimitri Payet struck two minutes before half-time to put France in complete control and Antoine Griezmann raced clear to add a fourth to round out France´s first-half blitz.
Iceland, who beat England 2-1 to reach the last eight, put on another never-say-die performance. Kolbeinn Sigthorsson and Birkir Bjarnason grabbed second-half consolation goals either side of Giroud´s second but Iceland were overpowerd by France´s domination.
Didier Deschamps´ men will take on Germany in Marseille on Thursday for a place in the final, while Iceland will return home as heroes after a remarkable run in their first appearance at a major tournament.
“Germany are the best team, there is no doubt about that, even if Italy gave them a few scares. But we are there in the final four,” said Deschamps.
Iceland, who had never beaten France in 11 attempts, kept faith with the side that shocked England, making European Championship history as the first team to name an unchanged line-up for their first five matches
Samuel Umtiti became the first French outfield player to make his international debut during a major finals since 1966 as the Barcelona-bound defender replaced the suspended Adil Rami.
Moussa Sissoko filled in for N´Golo Kante, who was also serving a one-match ban, on the right side of midfield as Deschamps stuck with the 4-2-3-1 that helped France fight back to beat the Republic of Ireland in the last 16.
Courtesy : TheNews