France 5 Portugal 3, friendly, November 1959
The most high-scoring encounter between the teams saw France prevail courtesy of a hat-trick from Reims striker Just Fontaine, 13-goal top scorer at the previous year’s World Cup in Sweden. In front of 48,111 fans at Stade de Colombes in Paris, goals from Fontaine, Pierre Grillet and Lucien Muller put France 3-0 up inside 22 minutes. Belenenses forward Matateu and Domiciano Cavem trimmed the deficit later in the first half. But Fontaine’s quick-fire second-half double completed his hat-trick and gave France victory, rendering Matateu’s 76th-minute effort immaterial.
France 0 Portugal 2, friendly, April 1975
France left Stade de Colombes for the Parc des Princes in 1972, but they returned to their former home three years later for a friendly against Portugal. Neither side had graced a major tournament since the 1966 World Cup and a low-quality contest was decided by two errors. Benfica great Nene put Portugal ahead in the 21st minute after France goalkeeper Rene Charrier failed to gather a low cross. Shortly after the hour, Marinho capitalised on a loose touch by Jean-Francois Jodar and finished with a deft lob to seal what remains Portugal’s last victory over France.
France 3 Portugal 2 (aet), European Championship semi-final, June 1984
In the first competitive encounter between the teams, hosts and favourites France progressed after a dizzyingly dramatic contest at Marseille’s Stade Velodrome. Jean-Francois Domergue gave France a 25th-minute lead with a blistering free-kick, only for Rui Jordao’s looping 74th-minute header to send the game to extra time. The Angola-born striker struck again in the ninth minute of the extra period with a deflected volley, but Domergue stabbed in an equaliser before Jean Tigana’s jinking run teed up French talisman Michel Platini to slam home a 119th-minute winner. Platini would be on target again in the final as France defeated Spain 2-0 to claim their first major trophy.
France 2 Portugal 1 (aet), European Championship semi-final, June 2000
Another last-four clash, another last-gasp winner by a French poster boy. Seeking to complete a world and European double, Roger Lemerre’s France fell behind to Portugal in Brussels when Nuno Gomes’s snapshot earned Portugal a 19th-minute lead. But Nicolas Anelka set up Thierry Henry for an equaliser in the 51st minute, sending the game to extra time. With penalties beckoning, Portugal right-back Abel Xavier blocked a goal-bound shot from Sylvain Wiltord with his hand and after lengthy Portuguese protests, Zinedine Zidane swept in a golden goal penalty. There was more late drama in the final, and another golden goal, as David Trezeguet’s 103rd-minute strike sank Italy.
France 1 Portugal 0, World Cup semi-final, July 2006
Zidane was on target again six years later as France emerged victorious from the most prestigious game between the two sides prior to Euro 2016. Having reversed his decision to retire from international football before the tournament, Zidane had already inspired France to knockout-round wins over Spain and Brazil by the time he came up against his former Real Madrid team-mate Luis Figo in Munich. As in 2000, he decided the game from the penalty spot, beating Ricardo from 12 yards in the 33rd minute after Henry had been tripped by Ricardo Carvalho. Zidane netted again from the spot in the final — on his last professional appearance — but was later sent off for headbutting Marco Materazzi as France lost on penalties to Italy in Berlin.