The French entered today's match against Sweden knowing exactly what they needed to do to advance to the quarterfinals of Euro 2012. A win or draw means they play on, and so far, so good...at least in the sense that they are drawing. What's not going well is that Sweden came very close several times to putting them a goal down.
Sweden looked the better side from the opening whistle, generating a couple good chances against Hugo Lloris. The always "exciting" Philippe Mexes made a mess of an aerial clearance in the 10th minute that allowed Ola Toivonen to move in on Lloris. Toivonen was able to move around Lloris, but his shot to hit the outside of the post.
France looked better as the half went on, putting together some fancy passing in the midfield that came within one final pass of a really good chance on goal a couple times. Sweden held firm though, making the defensive play when required. It's what we've become used to with France in this tournament in that they aren't able to break down an organized defense. If they want to find a goal, it's more likely to come on the break, they simply don't seem capable of passing their way through the Swedish defense.
Sweden are eliminated, so there's no reason for them to change anything up in the second half. The French will have to find a way to break them down. In the end the big question of the half is what's more questionable, Mexes's defending or his pony tail?