Even without a match in group B of the Euro 2024 qualifiers, that of the France team, this Sunday was still rich in international clashes for the European selections. Here’s what to remember from the day’s meetings.
Saka wears England
The providential man of the Three Lions, from now on, it is Bukayo Saka. The England winger caught all the light this Sunday during his team’s victory against Ukraine (2-0). On the first goal, it is he who serves Harry Kane, with a perfect center (37th) for the 55th achievement in the selection of his captain. On the second, he did everything on his own, taking the ball to the entrance to the area and then unleashing a clear shot from the left. Thanks to him, Gareth Southgate’s men are now alone at the top of Group C, with two victories.
Italy secure against Malta
Constrained to an obligation of result after its defeat against England (1-2), Italy on Thursday recovered against Malta (2-0). After a failed start to the match, Roberto Mancini’s players gained momentum and shook the net twice, by Mateo Retegui from a corner (15th) then by Matteo Pessina (27th), who victoriously took over a cross from Emerson. An advantage that they must have deemed sufficient, since they offered almost nothing in the second half.
Kazakhstan’s feat against Denmark
It’s probably not the one we would have bet on, but the match not to be missed this Sunday was Kazakhstan-Denmark (3-2). Not for his predictable first hour, which saw Group H favorites Denmark take the lead on a Rasmus Höjlund brace. But well for his completely crazy last half hour, during which the Snow Leopards overturned the meeting, equalizing with a penalty from Baktiyar Zaynutdinov (73rd) then a sublime shot from afar from Askhat Tagybergen (86th). The final headed goal, signed Abat Aimbetov (88th), at the end of the suspense, definitely tipped the afternoon into the irrational and offered the Central Asian country the greatest feat in its history.
Another double for Ronaldo
In selection, Cristiano Ronaldo is stainless. Against Luxembourg, one of his favorite scapegoats, the captain of Portugal scored twice with his left foot, to carry his team to an easy victory (6-0). With his 122 goals including 21 doubled in 198 caps, at 38, he is more than ever the top scorer in the history of international football. Very fit, Bernardo Silva, man of the match, also distinguished himself with a nice header and an assist.
In Group H, completely open after the defeat of Denmark, Slovenia won an easy victory against San Marino (2-0), while Finland won in Northern Ireland (0-1). In Group J, that of Portugal, Iceland atomized Liechtenstein (0-7), with a hat-trick from Aron Gunnarsson, while Slovakia overcame Bosnia and Herzegovina (2-0).