Euro round-up: Portugal top group after convincing win

June 23, 2024 - 10:06
Portugal secured top spot in Group F with a game to spare after easing to a 3-0 win against Turkey in Dortmund, while in Group E all four teams head into the last game tied on three points apiece.

Georgia and Czech Republic play out 1-1 draw

Georgia winger Saba Lobjanidze fired over in the final stages when through on goal. AFP/VNA Photo

Georgia have picked up their first ever point at a major international tournament in a hard-fought draw against Czech Republic.

The Czech Republic, facing the lowest-ranked side in the tournament, started the brighter knowing this was a great chance to pick up a vital three points in their quest to make it out of Group F.

They battered the Georgia box with cross after cross and created chances the tournament minnows struggled to withstand.

In the opening half hours, the Czechs had managed 12 shots, with seven on target.

But Georgia stood strong, with goalkeeper Giorgi Mamardashvili making as many saves (eight) by half-time as any other goalkeeper has in an entire match at Euro 2024.

In a rare attack, Georgia were gifted a penalty deep in first-half injury time, when Robin Hranac handballed following a cross from a Khvicha Kvaratskhelia free-kick.

Georges Mikautadze slotted home to send Georgia into the unlikeliest of half-time leads.

Striker Patrik Schick had the lion's share of attempts for the Czech Republic and he eventually found the back of the net on 59 minutes.

After defeating in their opening match, the Czechs knew this was a 'must not lose' game.

Georgia did have a chance to win it with almost the last kick of the game but Saba Lobjanidze blasted the ball over the bar.

Portugal secure top spot

A young pitch invader takes a selfie with Cristiano Ronaldo as Portugal beat Turkey. AFP/VNA Photo

Portugal secured top spot in Group F with a game to spare after easing to a 3-0 win against Turkey in Dortmund.

Bernardo Silva opened the scoring with his first ever goal at a major tournament for Portugal, before a bizarre Samet Akaydin own goal and a Bruno Fernandes tap-in secured the win.

Turkey can still advance to the knock-out stages after Georgia and Czech Republic only drew, but they will need to play much better in their final game against the Czechs.

Silva's opener, his first at a major tournament for his country, was followed by a farcical own goal.

Without looking Samet Akaydin played an innocent back pass but goalkeeper Altay Bayindir was not where the defender thought he was and the ball rolled into an empty net.

After the break, Manchester United's Bruno Fernandes added the third after an unselfish assist from Cristiano Ronaldo to seal the win.

UEFA are set to launch an investigation into scenes that saw Ronaldo approached by six pitch invaders. The Portugal captain did pose for one photograph with a young fan but became more annoyed when three more tried to reach him before the final whistle. Two other men breached the cordon during post-match celebrations. Portugal manager Roberto Martinez said he was concerned over player safety.

Belgium beat Romania but still all to play for

Belgium midfielder Youri Tielemans (left) celebrates after scoring against Romania. AFP/VNA Photo

Youri Tielemans got Belgium off to a flier against Romania, scoring after just 73 seconds.

But the real star of this show was captain Kevin De Bruyne.

The Manchester City midfielder was the best player on the pitch, controlling the game and scoring a second goal to wrap up the win.

That result leaves Group E more open than any group has ever been in European Championship history.

For the first time, all four teams in a group head into the last game tied on three points apiece. It means all four teams can still finish in any position. VNS