Written By : Bhavdeep Singh
The last five matches of Match day 1 were played on day 4 and day 5 of the Euro 2016, here is a group wise roundup
- Czech Republic
- Spain vs Czech Republic : It was quite expected that Spain would take the win, and it would’ve been a huge win had it not been for Golden glove winner Petr Cech who stopped shot after shot. It seemed like a 0-0 by the 85th minute but Pique had other plans, his header ended up in the net in the 87th minute to grant all 3 points to Spain
- Republic Of Ireland
- Rep. of Ireland vs Sweden : Perhaps a game that surprised us all, in a group of greats like Italy, Belgium and Sweden, Rep. Of Ireland would be seen as an underdog, but this seems to be the year of the underdogs and keeping up with that, they got the first goal and kept this lead up till the 71st minute before Manchester United bound Zlatan Ibrahimovic crossed the ball into the box and in a desperate attempt to save their lead, Ciaran Clark headed the ball into his own net, and another match ended at 1-1
- Belgium vs Italy : A game that promised entertainment and delivered nothing less, two giants of Europe battled it out at Stade de Lyon and Chelsea boss Antonio Conte’s side came out as winners. The ball swung both ways in the first 10 minutes of the game, and both teams got at least one chance by the half hour mark, but it was Leonardo Bonucci’s magnificent ball to Giaccherini which made all the difference, at least in the first half. The second half was pretty much the same, both teams trying to penetrate defences and get goals in, the midfield battle was pretty evenly matched as well, but as we could expect from this tournament, the match wasn’t really over till the final whistle, just before which Pelle doubled the Italians’ lead with a fantastic volley to seal it all up.
- Austria vs Hungary : Another surprising match as Hungary beat the favourites with a scoreline of 2-0, Austria started out pretty well with David Alaba hitting the woodwork but later on in the game, they lost their shape, the Hungarians took advantage of that and coupled it with some interesting midfield and defensive performances to take the lead in the 62nd minute. Austria did not give up hope and ended up behind the defence quite a few times but they never made the most of their chances, their shape and morale was further worsened and that allowed Hungary to score another goal to take away all 3 points, an impressive display.
- Portugal vs Iceland : This group should be called the group of the Underdogs, as Iceland put up a decent performance to restrict the favourites to just a point. Iceland were indeed the more worked team, with the goalkeeper putting out some decent saves and the midfield fighting hard to win the battle, the pressure was on after Nani’s shot was converted in the 31st minute. The good thing was that Iceland did not give up, they were constantly on their toes and working hard to score their first ever European final goal. They were successful in the 50th minute as Bjarnason’s shot ended up in the net. The match ended at 1-1 but this draw would go down in the the history of Iceland as an iconic one.
Pictures : totalsportek, The Indian Express, The Telegraph