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UEFA EURO 2016 review: Reporters' picks

Members of EURO2016.com's crack reporting team in France named their highlights of the past month, including their favourite match, moment and song.

UEFA EURO 2016 review: Reporters' picks
UEFA EURO 2016 review: Reporters' picks ©Getty Images

Best player

John Atkin (@UEFAcomJohnA): Antoine Griezmann. The Drake thing's a bit misleading: he's a Chumbawamba man really. He gets knocked down (UEFA Champions League final penalty miss, dropped for Albania match) but gets up again.

Chris Burke (@UEFAcomChrisB): Antoine Griezmann. Overshadowed in France's first game and dropped for the second, 'Grizou' responded brilliantly to seal hero status in his homeland – a vacant position since 'Zizou' hung up his magic boots.

Jim Foulerton (@foulerjim): Antoine Griezmann. Who else can you go for? Les Bleus' No7 has been irrepressible, the most influential France player since Zinédine Zidane.

Wayne Harrison (@UEFAcomWayneH): I'm going to go against the grain and say Cristiano Ronaldo. His influence grew the further Portugal went. Two vital goals against Hungary, the role he played in crafting the winner versus Croatia and THAT header in the semi-finals ...

Andrew Haslam (@UEFAcomAndrewH): Aaron Ramsey was absolutely magnificent in Wales's quarter-final win against Belgium and consistently excellent throughout. The tournament felt like the midfielder's coming of age as a top-class performer.

Andy James (@UEFAcomAndyJ): I can't look past Antoine Griezmann. After a brilliant season with Atlético he's set UEFA EURO 2016 alight. Pace, skill and a wand of a left foot – a bit like me ...

Tom Kell (@UEFAcomTomK): Will Grigg. So he didn't play a minute, but tell me another player who had as much of an impact. I'll never get that song out of my head.

Paul Saffer (@UEFAcomPaulS)Antoine Griezmann probably overshadowed Dimitri Payet but an honourable mention for how Eden Hazard played against Hungary, probably the best individual display.

Best match

John Atkin: Hungary 3-3 Portugal. Portugal trailed three times, with Zoltán Gera scoring a corker, but Cristiano Ronaldo dragged them through. A defeat and the eventual finalists would have been out.

Chris Burke: France 5-2 Iceland. This was a cruel way for Iceland's run to end, but in a tournament of tight games and misfiring forwards, it was a joy to see the most potent attacking unit cut loose.

Jim Foulerton: Hungary 3-3 Portugal in Lyon. A thrilling roller coaster of a match in which Portugal came from behind three times and Ronaldo finally joined the party to drag his team into the last 16.

Wayne Harrison: Hungary 3-3 Portugal. I was keeping an eye on this while in Nice for Sweden-Belgium that same evening. Three times Hungary led, three times they were pegged back. Fantastic resolve from Portugal.

Andrew Haslam: France 5-2 Iceland. There were plenty of exceptional defensive efforts, but for adrenaline and excitement nothing really beats the end-to-end nature of this contest – which Iceland summed up by refusing to let their heads drop when 4-0 down at half-time.

Andy James: I enjoyed Germany v Italy from a tactical point of view and Iceland v Austria for the drama and emotion, but in terms of pure entertainment it's Portugal 3-3 Hungary.

Tom Kell: Italy 2-0 Spain. The occasion, the pouring rain, the intensity, the atmosphere, Antonio Conte's antics, goalkeeping heroics, the result. Stunning.

Paul Saffer: Croatia 2-1 Spain. For the ending and atmosphere, and also the seismic effect it had on the tournament in altering which half of the knockout draw certain teams ended up in.

Best goal

John Atkin: Xherdan Shaqiri v Poland. It was always going to take something special for Switzerland to break down Poland; Shaqiri, summoning up his inner salmon, delivered it.

Chris Burke: Hal Robson-Kanu v Belgium. Like his namesake HAL, the murderous computer from the film 2001, the clubless forward took extreme measures to be left alone in space and finish the job.

Jim Foulerton: Xherdan Shaqiri, Switzerland v Poland. Technically excellent. A left-footed scissor-kick from the edge of the area that had power and even bounced just before the keeper, crashing in off the post.

Wayne Harrison: Xherdan Shaqiri v Poland. Who doesn't love an overhead kick? Sensational. It was a pity for Shaqiri that he wasn't on the winning side. He deserved to be for the goal alone.

Andrew Haslam: Dimitri Payet v Romania. Seems a long, long time ago now but the hosts were staring at an underwhelming draw to open the competition – until Payet spanked one into the top corner from 25 metres. A sign of things to come.

Andy James: Cristiano Ronaldo's flick against Hungary. Audacious finish aside, the build-up to that goal was absolutely marvellous. It also officially announced Ronaldo as a major player at the tournament after a quiet first two outings.

Tom Kell: Arnor Ingvi Traustason v Austria. Austria threw everything forward in search of a winner that would have taken them through at Iceland's expense. The 94th-minute counterattack and the lunging back-post finish made for sheer drama.

Paul Saffer: Can't decide between Éder's late individual winner for Italy against Sweden (since I was there for that) and Éder's late individual winner for Portugal in the final ...

Best moment

John Atkin: Wales fans, with their side heading out, serenading the players with Men of Harlech and Land of my Fathers. Portugal's supporters respectfully ceded the airwaves while they did.

Chris Burke: Germany v Italy penalty shoot-out. Spot kicks are always a luxurious thrill for the neutral, even more so when the world's best reveal themselves as mere mortals. Forgive the schadenfreude, but this was raucous fun.

Jim Foulerton: An English one, unusually. Daniel Sturridge's late winner against Wales made you believe that England might actually be quite good. Didn't last long.

Wayne Harrison: Griezmann heading in a 90th-minute deadlock-breaking goal versus Albania on Didier Deschamps' return to Marseille – a game I was at.

Andrew Haslam: Iceland's celebrations. Even as an Englishman, it was hard to begrudge the smallest nation in the competition their moment after their stunning win against England in Nice. And the thunderclap is something to behold.

Andy James: I was lucky enough to be at England v Wales in Lens and seeing the two sets of fans sing the anthems so passionately – and respectfully – was really quite moving.

Tom Kell: Wales saluting their fans after going out. First there was a huddle in front of the 'Red Wall'. Then there was reciprocated applause. The supporters' chants grew louder. As touching as it was sincere.

Paul Saffer: Suspect it's Italy's clincher against Spain for the way it capped the best display of these finals.

Best newcomer

John Atkin: Iceland. They had picked up four points in qualifying for UEFA EURO 2012. Just look at them now.

Chris Burke: The round of 16. Hard to single out any one team so I'll plump for this bonus helping of games – Iceland beating England, Italy mastering Spain and just more football all round.

Jim Foulerton: Collectively at a EURO, Wales. Individually, Renato Sanches was fearless when handed more responsibility. Strong and gifted, definitely one to watch.

Wayne Harrison: Renato Sanches. From the UEFA Youth League, via the UEFA Champions League, to the EURO in the space of one season. He plays with such authority for one so young.

Andrew Haslam: Samuel Umtiti is a player I knew from the 2012 Under-19 EURO, so I'd kept an eye on his career at Lyon. Following his mid-finals move to Barcelona and insertion into this France side, I'd imagine a few more people know him now.

Andy James: Renato Sanches. What a player Bayern have on their hands – and kudos to Carlo Ancelotti for snapping him up ahead of EURO. He'd have been paying an awful lot more if he hadn't ...

Tom Kell: Hal Robson-Kanu. It's official, the Cruyff Turn needs a rebrand.

Paul Saffer: I would have thought Iceland, just pipping Wales for their general impact here in France.

Best song

John Atkin: Don't Take Me Home. The theme began with England but an ear-wringing bus journey to Germany v Italy confirmed this as the unofficial tournament anthem.

Chris Burke: Deșteaptă-te, Române (Romania). What better way to warm up for a little kick-about than a ditty that starts: "Wake up, Romania, from the sleep of death into which you have been sunk by the barbaric tyrants."

Jim Foulerton: Will Grigg's on Fire, Don't Take Me Home – both great. But the Welsh national anthem Land of My Fathers gets the nod for sheer hairs-on-the-back-of-your-neck quality.

Wayne Harrison: Don't Take Me Home. What a feeling it was hearing thousands of England fans singing it at Stade Vélodrome before the Russia match.

Andrew Haslam: Will Grigg's on Fire. Bizarre that a chant conceived in the third tier of English football has taken EURO by storm but when other teams start singing it you know you've made it. You couldn't move more than ten metres in Marseille's Vieux Port ahead of the semi-final for France and Germany fans belting it out.

Andy James: Don't Take Me Home was brilliant. However, Will Grigg's on Fire pips it for me. Seeing the Northern Irish fans jumping for 20 minutes straight during the match against Germany was breathtaking – for both of us, in different ways.

Tom Kell: Do I even need to answer this?

Paul Saffer: This comes down to the anthems. Perennial contenders Italy tended to be a little out of synch with the band so 1) Wales, 2) Russia, 3=) Portugal & France. Winners play Brazil, South Africa and USA in the FIFA Continental Anthem Cup.