France progress despite Sweden loss
France drifted into the quarter-finals of Euro 2012 despite second-half goals in a 2-0 defeat from Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Sebastian Larsson providing a rousing Group D send-off for already-eliminated Sweden.
Laurent Blanc's men were second best throughout as they blew their big chance to emerge as group winners and in the end had England to thank for beating Ukraine and keeping them in the competition.
Ibrahimovic struck a sensational volley to give the proud Swedes a 54th-minute lead then Larsson lashed home the second in injury time much to the delight of the Swedish fans in Kiev. France will now face reigning champions Spain in the last eight.
Erik Hamren's men, out after losing to both England and Ukraine, showed their intent from the start as they got forward well and fashioned their first chance with just three minutes on the clock. Martin Olsson was allowed too much space on the left and floated a cross to Ola Toivonen, who outjumped the French defence but could only direct his free header over the bar.
The French were struggling to make much of an impact, perhaps too secure in the knowledge that their last eight spot was virtually secure, though surely keen to avoid a meeting with Group C winners Spain.
The game drifted towards the interval in rather low-key fashion but France threatened in the final minute, Karim Benzema playing in Franck Ribery whose shot from just inside the box was blazed high over the bar.
Sweden continued to look more likely to break the deadlock early in the second period, Larsson setting up Olof Mellberg who was ruled narrowly offside, with the French struggling to break down a resolute Swedish defence.
They almost did so in the 50th minute, when Benzema sprang the offside trap to race clear on the left flank, and after cutting inside onto his favoured right foot, unleashed a shot which flew just wide of Andreas Isaksson's left-hand post.
Alou Diarra brought a simple save out of Isaksson but just as France looked to be getting to grips with the game, the Swedes stole forward once again and claimed their richly deserved opener.
Sweden made it two in injury time when Christian Wilhelmsson hammered Andreas Granqvist's cross against the bar and the ball rebounded for Larsson to ram home the simplest of chances.