Nail-biting encounters in the UEFA Euro 2024 group stages

by Lorraine Williamson
UEFA Euro 2024

FOOTBALL – The second games in the group stages of the UEFA Euro 2024 Championship are being played. There is much at stake, not just the football players, but the pride of the nation.

Scotland v Switzerland: A nail-biting draw

After suffering a 5-1 defeat by hosts Germany, Scotland needed a win against Switzerland to keep their hopes alive in the UEFA Euro 2024 Championship. The match started strong for Scotland, who dominated early possession. Despite several chances, it wasn’t until the 13th minute that Scotland broke the deadlock. Gilmour intercepted a missed Swiss corner, launching a counter-attack. He passed to Robertson, who flicked it to McGregor on the left. McGregor found McTominay, who slotted the ball into the net, making it 1-0 for Scotland.

Switzerland responded with several opportunities and finally equalised in the 26th minute through Shaqiri. Despite Switzerland finding the net again ten minutes later, the goal was disallowed for offside. The first half ended with frantic end-to-end play, but the score remained 1-1 after three minutes of stoppage time.

Second half

The second half continued with the same intensity. Scottish fans were vocally supportive, and the game saw plenty of action. At the one-hour mark, Tierney tried to stop Ndoye outside the penalty area but ended up injured and was stretchered off, ruling him out of the remaining matches. Both teams desperately sought a winner in a nail-biting contest. Switzerland found the net again in the 83rd minute, but it was once again ruled offside. The match concluded 1-1 after four minutes of added time, leaving Scotland with a glimmer of hope for progression as they prepare to face Hungary on Sunday evening.

England v Denmark: Turf troubles and a stalemate

England, having secured a 1-0 victory against Serbia in their first match, aimed to maintain their lead in Group C with a win over Denmark. The game started tense, with England dominating possession but Denmark creating more chances. Harry Kane broke the deadlock at 18 minutes, showcasing his striking prowess and putting England ahead 1-0.

However, problems with the pitch affected play throughout the game. Denmark equalised in the 34th minute with a goal from Hjulmand, making it 1-1. Hjulmand nearly scored again, but his shot was blocked for a corner. Despite England improving their game, the first half ended level, with only one minute of added stoppage time.

The second half was an open contest, with both teams struggling with the turf conditions. In the closing minutes, Denmark had two promising chances, but couldn’t convert. The game ended 1-1 after three minutes of stoppage time, leaving England to rue the pitch issues as they look to solidify their position in the upcoming matches. England next play on Tuesday evening against Slovenia.

Spain v Italy: Dominance and a fortunate own goal

Spain faced Italy in a crucial Group B encounter, starting with high intensity. Spain dominated the first 20 minutes, creating several chances. The young star Jamal Yamal was denied an early goal opportunity, as Spain struggled to convert their dominance into goals. The first half ended goalless, despite Spain’s control.

Ten minutes into the second half, Spain finally found the net through an own goal by Italy’s Calaflori, reflecting Spain’s pressure. Although it was an own goal, it was a testament to Spain’s persistent attacks. Yamal continued to impress, almost scoring again, displaying confidence and skill that make him a player to watch.

In the final stages, both teams had chances, but Spain remained the superior side. They secured all three points, maintaining their top position in the group. Spain will next face Albania on Monday, looking to continue their strong form in the tournament.

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