UEFA Euro 2016 wrap-up – We had plenty of action today with some of the world’s best players on the pitch!
Spain 1-0 Czech Republic
The Euro 2012 champions had to wait till the last 5 minutes of the game to unlock the Czech’s defense when Pique headed the ball to the net. Spain did dominate the game but found it very difficult to score.
Coach Del Bosque reacts to the the win:
“The first thing that’s important is to get the three points. The second thing is the players’ attitude. Believing in the victory is important for winning.
We created a lot of chances and we hope finishing will not be a problem. We had the game completely under control and that’s the most important thing. Everyone wants to score more goals but our style hasn’t been too bad in recent years. It’s fantastic we have great midfielders and if the forwards have to move, then they have to move and interpret what their team-mates are doing”.
Gerard Piqué, Spain goalscorer
“Of course it’s a massive thing to score the goal that gives us the win, but we all performed very well – we managed to play very well both at the back and up front. If you can play and attack well, that means you open up the pitch and can find a way through, even if the opposition are defending really deep. That’s the way you create chances: by creating space”.
Ireland 1-1 Sweden
Zlatan Ibrahimovic was coming back to the city where he won everything with PSG for the past 4 years. However, the Irish played extremely well defending him and opened the score early in the second half. Sweden found the equalizer for a fair 1-1 draw.
Coach O’Neill, Republic of Ireland reacts:
“We should have had the game out of sight at half-time but we just couldn’t get the goal and we deservedly went ahead in the second half.
These players want to play and they are desperate to play, they’re a great bunch to work with. We’re disappointed to have conceded an equaliser but I can’t fault their performance, they were terrific.
It was a great goal. Seamus Coleman did brilliantly and Wes was off balance but it was a great hit. Great goal.
We have two very, very tough matches coming against two sides that are very classy but if I can take anything from the performance today, it was that the players looked accomplished. We have the desire but the players are also growing into international football”.
Belgium 0-2 Italy
Antonio Conte, Italy coach comments on the big W:
“I’ve been repeating from the beginning – and I’m not one to tell lies – that this is a group first and foremost of men, and then of footballers. That’s important because in a tournament like this you need an alchemy of people who get on well together, and the biggest satisfaction for me tonight is to see how happy they all were, including those on the bench. There’s a very good spirit in this squad.
Having said that, we’ve got to be happy today, a bit happy tomorrow and then we have to prepare for Sweden because the memory of two years ago is still fresh, when we did well against England and then lost [to Costa Rica in the group stage]. That’s a wound which remains in the minds of our players and fans.
We have big intentions and our objective remains the same, to get into the last 16. The objective is to get where we deserve to be, without any regrets. I think the fans are pleased when they see 23 players giving everything on the field and being willing to spill blood.
I cannot deny that I was very, very emotional today – to be coach of a country in such a big tournament doesn’t happen every day. It’s something special for the lads to wear this shirt, but I’d like to say also that with this unity of intention, we can do great things”.