Arsenal at Euro 2016: Özil and Giroud Score

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As part of LastWordOnSports’ Euro 2016 coverage, we are tracking Arsenal players’ performances in France. After Jack Wilshere’s and Granit Xhaka’s respective teams lost in the Last 16, the remaining Arsenal players at the Euros are:

  • France: Oliver Giroud, Laurent Koscielny
  • Wales: Aaron Ramsey
  • Germany: Mesut Özil
  • Poland: Wojciech Szczesny

Arsenal at Euro 2016: Ramsey, Koscielny, Özil and Giroud through to semis

Szczesny Looks On As Poland Suffer Penalties Agony

Wojciech Sczcesny was an unused substitute as his national side lost 5-3 on penalties to Portugal. An early strike from Robert Lewandowski fired Poland ahead before the promising Renato Sanches equalised via a deflected strike. After both sides were unable to break the deadlock in normal and extra time, the game went to penalties. Polish captain Jakub Blaszczykowski missed a crucial penalty meaning Poland were knocked out in the quarter-final.

Ramsey’s Euros Journey Continues

Aaron Ramsey put in a Man of the Match display against Belgium as Wales won 3-1. Ramsey’s two assists for Ashley Williams’ and Hal Robson-Kanu’s goals pushed Wales towards a historic semi-final against Portugal. Alongside his two assists, he completed 87% of his passes and was the heartbeat of Wales’ attack before being replaced by James Collins. Unfortunately for the Welsh midfielder, he received a yellow card meaning he will be suspended for Wales’ semi -inal on Wednesday night.

Özil Helps Germany Qualify

Mesut Özil bagged his first goal of the tournament as Germany required penalties to knock out Italy. The 27-year-old finished a threatening Jonas Hector cross in the 65th minute and proved vital in Germany’s midfield. His goal looked to be the winning goal but after Jerome Boateng handled in the area and Leonardo Bonucci’s converted penalty, the game entered extra time. A tense extra time followed before a practice Germans know best—a penalty shootout. Özil’s penalty hit the post in an underwhelming shootout but Hector’s penalty won the game for the Germans.

As a result, Özil now faces Oliver Giroud and Laurent Koscielny in a France vs Germany semi-final on Thursday night.

Giroud Bags Brace To Put France Into Semi-Final

Goals either side of half-time from Oliver Giroud put France past Iceland in a 5-2 win. Giroud opened the scoring with a low strike in the 12th minute and fired a bullet header in the 58th minute from a free kick. His header past Icelandic goalkeeper Hannes Halldórsson was his final touch as he was substituted off to avoid being suspended.

Likewise with Laurent Koscielny—he played 72 minutes before being replaced by Manchester City’s Eliaquim Mangala. Despite conceding a goal, Koscielny played well in defence, completing 96% of his passes and winning four out of five aerial duels. Their precautionary substitutions mean they are eligible to face Germany.