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Euro 2024 Football News

UEFA Euro 2024: Day 7 Match Reviews

Rahul Saha Rahul Saha

Day 7 of Euro 2024 saw three-time champions Spain avenge their 2021 semi-final loss to Italy with a 1-0 win over the Azzurri, Ukraine came from behind to earn a vital victory against high-flying Slovakia while in the final game of the day, Ralf Rangnick’s Austrian side outclassed a bite-less Polish side to stay in touch of qualification through to the next round. 

So without further ado, let’s break down all the action from day 7 of Euro 2024. 

Match 18: Spain 1-0 Italy 

Riccardo Calfiori’s second-half own goal without any response gave Luis de la Fuente’s Spanish side a well-earned 1-0 victory over the defending champions on Friday, as a result qualifying for the Round of 16 as Group B winners. 

Spain dominated the game from start to finish and were kept at bay largely due to Gianluigi Donnarumma’s inspirational performance between the posts. Both Spanish wingers Lamine Yamal and Nico Williams tormented the Italian fullbacks, turning them inside out time and again. 

Pedri, Nico Williams, Alvaro Morata and Fabian Ruiz all threatened to break the deadlock in a dominant first period, but Italy ultimately stood firm to scrape through to half-time unscathed.

However, it was Williams’ dangerous ball across the face of goal that was deflected in by Calfiori in the 55th minute. The 21-year-old winger almost sealed the deal in the 70th minute, before cannoning his shot off the bar. 

As for Italy, they finished the contest with just one shot on target and never really looked like finding a way back into the contest. They barely laid a glove on Spain all game barring a late spell of possession which de la Fuente’s side dealt with relative ease.

Match 19: Slovakia 1-2 Ukraine  

After getting torn apart by Romania 3-0 in their first match, Ukraine conceded the opening goal to Slovakia on Friday but fought back for a much-needed 2-1 win, keeping their hopes alive of making it to the knockout stages. 

Rebrov made four changes to the team after the heavy defeat to Romania but the same fragility in defense remained — at least to begin with. 

Ivan Schranz, who also scored the only goal in Slovakia’s surprise 1-0 win over Belgium four days ago, was left free at the far post when his marker Oleksandr Zinchenko jumped to intercept a cross which flew over his head.

Although at fault for the first goal, Zinchenko was pivotal to Ukraine’s equaliser, overlapping on the left flank to receive the ball and cross low for Mykola Shaparenko, who found space to score his first international goal in nearly three years.

Bringing Yaremchuk off the bench to replace an out-of-sorts Artem Dovbyk changed the game again as the 28-year-old Valencia man surged past the Slovakian defense to score the winner.

Slovakia, on the other hand, is fighting to prevent a repeat of the 2021 Euros, where it won its first game but lost the next two and was eliminated in the group stage on goal difference. 

On paper, they’ve got the two harder games out of the way but Romania will definitely give them a much stern test than what was anticipated before, especially given the fact that they’d be playing without defender David Hancko, who injured his hamstring. 

Match 20: Poland 1-3 Austria  

Friday’s 3-1 defeat to Austria means Poland technically become the first team to get knocked out of Euro 2024, while Ralf Rangnick’s men keep their hopes alive and only need a draw against the Dutch in their final Group D fixture to confirm knockout qualification. 

Rangnick’s team started dominantly and were rewarded with the lead when defender Gernot Trauner powered a header past Polish goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny after clever wing play from left-back Phillipp Mwene.

Poland grew into the contest, though, and the game was level just before the half-hour mark, when Krzysztof Pi?tek pounced to slot in from close range after Trauner blocked Jan Bednarek’s shot.

Robert Lewandowski entered the pitch in the 60th minute for his first outing of the tournament, however, his only involvement of note was to pick up a yellow card shortly after coming on for catching Philipp Lienhart in the face with his elbow.

A few minutes later, Marko Arnautovic dummied substitute Alexander Prass’ incisive pass, and Christoph Baumgartner took a touch before calmly slotting the ball into the bottom corner.

The third goal shortly followed when Marcel Sabitzer was brought down by Wojciech Szczesny inside his box. Arnautovic sent the keeper the wrong way from the spot to give Austria an unassailable 3-1 lead on the night. 

How the points table looks: 

Group BGroup DGroup E
Teams PlayedGDPointsTeamsPlayedGDPointsTeamsPlayedGD Points
Spain2+46Netherlands 2+14Romania1+33
Italy203France2+14Slovakia2+13
Albania2-11Austria2+13Ukraine2-23
Croatia2-31Poland2-30Belgium1-10

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UEFA Euro 2024: Day 7 Match Reviews
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Rahul Saha

Rahul Saha

An engineer taking the road less taken. I love writing, live and breathe football, and am always up for a tactical conversation.

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