1 in, 1 out as Ibrahima Konate’s France force start of Diogo Jota’s summer break

Ibrahima Konate‘s France and Diogo Jota‘s Portugal went head to head for a place in the semi-final on Friday evening, but neither would feature in the 120-minute clash.

We are reaching the business end of the Euros, a tournament that has been a mixed one when it comes to the success of Liverpool players.

From an individual standpoint, it has been disappointing for both Konate and Jota as neither were selected in the XI up to, and including, their quarter-final meeting.

And the two were again unused substitutes as France and Portugal went the distance on Friday night after the score remained 0-0 at the 90 and 120-minute mark.

The resulting penalty shootout went the way of Les Bleus, who won 5-3 after Joao Felix hit the post with his attempt – a player Roberto Martinez opted for off the bench in extra time over Jota.

It means Konate continues in the competition, with Spain awaiting France in the semi-finals on July 9 – though, he is unlikely to take part with William Saliba still the preferred option.

As for Jota, his summer break will now commence. He will be expected to be given three weeks off, which would likely see him report for pre-season in the United States from July 29 onwards.

Liverpool’s No. 20 was noted to have suffered muscle fatigue throughout the tournament, and he played just 97 minutes across Portugal’s five matches.

Why Martinez did not turn to a proven poacher when his side needed a breakthrough against France is puzzling, but from a Reds perspective, we can be thankful he was not played into the ground.

DORTMUND, GERMANY - Saturday, June 22, 2024: Portugal's head coach Roberto Martínez during the UEFA Euro 2024 Group F match between Turkey and Portugal at the Westfalenstadion. (Photo by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

With a lot resting on the success of pre-season, that Jota can now go on holiday and return fresh is a welcome boost after another injury-hit campaign in 2023/24.

With Jota out and Konate continuing on, Saturday will see the fates of Virgil van Dijk, Cody Gakpo, Ryan Gravenberch, Trent Alexander-Arnold and Joe Gomez decided as they play their quarter-final ties.

The Netherlands meet Turkiye in the 8pm (BST) kickoff, while England face Switzerland at 5pm.