Edouard treble gives France second U17 title
Friday, May 22, 2015
France 4-1 Germany
Odsonne Edouard scored the first U17 final hat-trick as France secured their second title and condemned Germany to a third showpiece loss.
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• France, victors in 2004, win their second UEFA European Under-17 Championship title
• Odsonne Edouard scores a hat-trick, taking his tournament tally to eight
• The Paris Saint-Germain striker finishes as the finals' leading scorer
• Germany left-back Erdinc Karakas makes it 2-1 after 50 minutes
• A late own goal from Gökhan Gül caps things off for Les Petits Bleus
A hat-trick from tournament top scorer Odsonne Edouard earned France their second UEFA European Under-17 Championship title as Germany's previously impenetrable defence found the forward too hot to handle in the Burgas final.
Edouard, who had scored five in four appearances heading into the match, continued his impressive strike rate with two goals in seven minutes either side of the break. Their run of five successive clean sheets in Bulgaria over, Germany halved their arrears in an absorbing contest through Erdinc Karakas. Edouard's third gave him the honour of becoming the first player to register a treble in a U17 decider. A late own goal from Gökhan Gül confirmed Germany's third showpiece defeat, following losses in 2011 and 2012.
While France coach Jean-Claude Giuntini stuck with the same XI that started the semi-final shoot-out triumph over Belgium, opposite number Christian Wück made five changes. It was one of the incomers who set up Germany's first shot across the bows, Mats Köhlert feeding Felix Passlack for a low drive that pressed Luca Zidane into service inside 60 seconds.
France soon replied, with the dangerous Nanitamo Ikone bursting to the byline and pulling the ball back for Timothé Cognat. The skipper, arriving late, fired over the crossbar. Ikone got his aim, if not his accuracy, right five minutes later when he stepped inside a challenge and stung the palms of Constantin Frommann.
The tempo remained high, the game surprisingly open, as Les Petits Bleus looked for the chink in Germany's armour. They should have found it with a quarter of an hour of the first half remaining as Cognat sprung the lively Jeff Reine Adélaïde bursting in behind. Frommann, however, stood tall once more.
Back came Germany, Johannes Eggestein, Niklas Schmidt and Passlack going close, only for Edouard to halt their momentum on the cusp of half-time. Ikone teed up Alec Georgen overlapping down the right and though the full-back's delivery across the area was missed by Bilal Boutobba, Edouard was not so profligate, dispatching an effort under Frommann.
Wück's players were now in unfamiliar territory, trailing. Their deficit increased seven minutes after the restart, Edouard again their tormentor. After Ikone had made heavy weather of rounding Frommann, having seized on Joel Abu Hanna's underhit back pass, the Paris Saint-Germain forward struck unerringly from the edge of the box.
Germany's response was swift. Eggestein firmly met Schmidt's set piece with his head, causing Zidane to parry, and Karakas turned in the rebound. Edouard, however, iced the French cake, exquisitely controlling Boutobba's pass and running on to clip over Frommann. Gül's late own goal mattered little – Giuntini's impressive side had long since done enough.