🇪🇺 Spain beat Ukraine to top spot; Portugal and Georgia also move on | OneFootball

🇪🇺 Spain beat Ukraine to top spot; Portugal and Georgia also move on | OneFootball

In partnership with

Yahoo sports
Icon: OneFootball


Richard Buxton·27 June 2023

🇪🇺 Spain beat Ukraine to top spot; Portugal and Georgia also move on

Article image:🇪🇺 Spain beat Ukraine to top spot; Portugal and Georgia also move on

The first half of the Euro U21 group stage concluded on Tuesday as four nations confirmed their place in the quarter-finals.

Here’s what went down.

OneFootball Videos

Spain’s late drama denies Ukraine top spot

Scorers: Zhelizko 66′ (OG), Ruiz 90′; Viunnik 43′, Sudakov 81′ (P)

Spain consolidated their Group B winners’ status in a thrilling top-of-the-table draw with Ukraine.

Just two minutes from the interval, Bohdan Viunnyk glanced home an opener after Oleksandr Nazarenko’s surging run and cross in the build-up.

La Rojita found themselves level midway through the second half when Ivan Zhelizko turned the ball into his own net from Rodrigo Riquelme’s cutback.

Ruslan Rotan’s side appeared to have taken maximum points when Heorhiy Sudakov scored from the penalty spot after Leo Román’s foul on Danylo Sikan.

But a smart turn and finish from Abel Ruiz in the final minute of normal time ensured his country will face Group B runners-up Italy as things stand.

Ukraine, meanwhile, will take on France should they remain in pole position when their group concludes on Wednesday.

Romania and Croatia bow out in muted fashion

Croatia and host nation Romania’s Euro U21 campaigns ended with a goalless dead rubber.

Both goalkeepers were regularly called into action during a lively opening 45 minutes where Gabriel Vidović hit the crossbar with a rebounded effort.

With only pride to play for, however, both teams continued to cancel each other out for the remainder of the stalemate in Bucharest.

Honours even as co-hosts Georgia progress

Scorers: Taylor 45+6′; Davitashvili 43′

Co-hosts Georgia rounded off their Group A campaign with a 1-1 draw against the Netherlands.

The game had to be temporarily suspended during the opening stages after a dog ran onto the pitch.

Erwin van de Looi’s side were also forced into an unforeseen change as Brian Brobbey was replaced due to early injury.

Georgia finally broke the deadlock moments before half-time when Zuriko Davitashvili produced an impressive solo effort.

But the Oranje struck back deep into added time through Kenneth Taylor volleying home inside the area from a loose ball.

Little separated the sides in the second half as they continued to trade blows yet were neither was unable to deliver a winner.

Ramaz Svanadze’s Crusaders will take on Group C’s runners up, currently the Czech Republic, in the quarter finals.

Portugal hold on to set up England showdown

Scorers: Neves 56′, Dantas 89′ (P); Vertessen 65′

Portugal set up a last-eight meeting with England after dramatically leapfrogging Belgium in their Group A finale.

Loïs Openda enjoyed the Red Devils’ best chance during the first half with an effort which crashed back off the crossbar in the second minute.

Pedro Neto offered a near-immediate retaliation as he attempted to test Maarten Vandevoordt with his shot following a counterattack.

Another Wolves players kept Vandevoordt on his toes by Fábio Silva forcing a good close-range stop from the future RB Leipzig goalkeeper.

The Seleção’s dominance was rewarded after the interval when João Neves drilled a right-footed volley from Silva’s deflected cross on 56 minutes.

Their hopes of leapfrogging Belgium into the knockout stage were dealt a blow when Jorbe Vertessen powered home Openda’s right-sided delivery.

But the 2021 finalists snatched the spoils through a Tiago Dantas penalty near the end of normal time after Zeno Debast had impeded Henrique Araújo.

Rui Jorge’s side are now set to take on the Young Lions in Saturday’s quarter-final showdown in Tblisi.