Harry Kane scored twice as England eased to a 4-0 victory over Ukraine at the Stadio Olimpico on Saturday to set up a Euro 2020 semi-final with Denmark on home soil.

England were riding the crest of a wave after beating Germany in the last 16 and, in their first game away from Wembley this tournament, took the lead inside four minutes when Raheem Sterling played in Kane.

That was England's earliest European Championship goal since Michael Owen against Portugal in 2004 and the Three Lions added two more quickfire goals to their tally in the first five minutes of the second half through Harry Maguire and Kane.

Substitute Jordan Henderson's first international goal gave Gareth Southgate further reason to cheer as his side kept their fifth clean sheet in a row from the start of the tournament, something only Italy have previously managed at a World Cup or Euros.

Sterling and Kane scored in England's last-16 win against Germany and the pair combined for their side's early opener in Rome, the Manchester City winger threading the ball through for his team-mate to poke past Georgi Bushchan.

England had failed to win any of the previous five European Championship games in which they had scored in the opening four minutes and they were given a warning when Jordan Pickford was tested by a Roman Yaremchuk strike.

The Three Lions continued to dominate possession but their only other on-target attempt of the first half came via a powerful Declan Rice drive that was routinely dealt with by Bushchan.

Ukraine were making just their second quarter-final appearance at a major tournament and ended the opening period on top, though they found themselves further behind 55 seconds into the second half when Maguire headed home.

Luke Shaw set up that goal and also played in the cross that Kane headed through the legs of Bushchan for England's third, effectively killing off the contest with 40 minutes to play in the Italian capital.

England continued to search for goals and Henderson, just six minutes after replacing Rice, made the most of some terrible Ukraine defending to head in a fourth for Southgate's side, who had little trouble in seeing out the win.

Gareth Southgate has a reputation for matter-of-fact sincerity in news conferences but it felt like even he was laying it on a little thick last October.

Luke Shaw was fit and a fixture in Manchester United's first team but had ticked past two years without an England call-up.

For Nations League matches against Belgium and Denmark and a friendly versus Wales, Ben Chilwell was unavailable. Southgate selected and split left wing-back duties between Kieran Trippier, Ainsley Maitland-Niles and Bukayo Saka – none of whom are specialists in the position.

"The door is certainly open," he replied when asked about Shaw's seemingly dwindling prospects.

"I don't think we've ever closed the door on any player - and we certainly wouldn't on Luke.

"He's more than capable of being the best left-back in the country in my opinion."

A scroll through some of the social media responses to that assertion suggests not too many agreed.

After his starring role in the stirring 2-0 Euro 2020 win over Germany, it is hard to argue against the notion that Shaw – despite everything he has endured since becoming the most expensive teenager in world football back in June 2014 – is England's premier left-sided defender.

 

Dark days at Old Trafford

"If I'd flown back, I would probably have lost my leg because of the blood clots."

It is an incredibly stark statement. A tackle by PSV's Hector Moreno during a September 2015 Champions League match left Shaw with a horrific double leg fracture that threatened to become worse than that gruesome description.

As Shaw recuperated from surgery at St Anna Ziekenhuis hospital in Geldrop and United made plans to fly him home, doctors discovered two blood clots and scheduled an emergency operation.

"I've got two scars down the side of my leg where they had to cut me open and pull them out," said the former Southampton youngster, when discussing his ordeal while on England duty three years later.

"I'd be lying if I said I hadn't sometimes thought about stopping playing football [during rehabilitation]. It went on for a long period, doing the same things every day.

"I couldn’t do anything else because of the break. It was frustrating but I came out the other side."

When he returned to action the following season, Shaw had another draining, sapping problem - Jose Mourinho was the Manchester United manager.

After starting the season as first choice, Mourinho singled out Shaw for strong criticism after a 3-1 defeat at Watford.

Things came to an unsavoury head in April 2017, when the former Chelsea boss first questioned "the way he trains, the way he commits, the focus, the ambition" ahead of a game with Everton.

 

Then, after Shaw came off the bench and impressed to help United salvage a 1-1 draw, Mourinho claimed: "He had a good performance but it was his body with my brain. He was in front of me and I was making every decision for him."

The relationship remained strained, even as Shaw was handed a five-year contract extension in October 2018 - two months before Mourinho was sacked.

"There is no hiding that we didn't get on," Shaw told reporters last week, after Mourinho – now working as a pundit after his Tottenham tenure went the same way as his United reign – criticised his "dramatically bad" corner taking during England's 1-0 group stage win over the Czech Republic.

"I think he was a brilliant manager but, you know, the past is the past. It is time to move on. I am trying to move on but, obviously, he can't. He continuously talks about me, which I find quite strange."

The long road to Wembley

The raucous din as Shaw drove forward from midfield and fed Jack Grealish on Tuesday meant he would have been unlikely to hear instructions from the touchline or anywhere else inside Wembley. Funnily enough, his football brain was in good order.

Grealish crossed and Harry Kane stooped to head England to a 2-0 win over Germany, their first knockout stage victory over any team with a world title to their name since 1966.

Southgate's Euro 2020 side have worn their pragmatism proudly. Despite an enviable array of attacking talent – Shaw described it as "absolute madness, so frightening" this week - they go forward with cautious calculation and are yet to concede a goal.

As well as being part of that watertight defensive unit, Shaw has proved invaluable to an attacking approach that values quality over quantity. His five chances created, with four from open play, are the most of any England player, as are his 18 passes into the opposition box. An expected assists (xA) figure of 1.08 also shows him to be cumulatively laying on a better quality of chances than any of his team-mates.

Those attacking gifts were a large part of what persuaded United to pay Southampton £27million for his services, with Shaw following Wayne Bridge and Gareth Bale off the St Mary's production line as a left-back with game-changing qualities.

Initially, he appeared inhibited at Old Trafford, as then-manager Louis van Gaal questioned his fitness in an early taste of what was to come under Mourinho. Then the injury nightmare began.

It has been a long road back, but in 2020-21, United got their most sustained look at the player they hoped they were buying six years earlier.

 

Shaw's 47 appearances were his most in a single campaign and culminated in Europa League final heartache against Villarreal. It was his first United appearance in a major final, representing a personal triumph over a catalogue of fitness problems amid penalty shoot-out woe.

He claimed six assists in all competitions, the most of his career, while 90 chances created was more than double his previous best of 41 in 2018-19.

Shaw averaged 6.88 passes into the opposition box per 90 minutes, having never averaged above 3.5 before, despite some of his previous sample sizes being far smaller due to injury interrupted campaigns.

Southgate's faith repaid

If those performances made Shaw impossible to ignore last season, he was easily forgotten in March 2017.

Injuries and Mourinho's ire had combined to mean a solitary Premier League start in a five-month period, but he received a call-up from the recently installed England manager to take on Lithuania and Germany.

"Generally, we've tried to pick players who are playing regularly, and one or two have missed out because of that. Luke is probably the exception. He's a player we have a lot of belief in," said Southgate, his former England Under-21 boss.

"Having worked with him before we think he can be an important player for the future. Now would be a good time to give him that confidence boost."

The progress from that point has been far from linear. Shaw was absent when England reached the semi-finals of Russia 2018, indeed this is his first tournament since the 2014 World Cup, when everything felt possible for a prodigiously gifted teen.

 

His latest recall only came in March but, with Ukraine up in Rome on Saturday as the first in a potential three-game shot at sporting immortality, the possibilities are opening up again.

Having made his debut in March 2014, this weekend is set to mark Shaw's 14th cap. At 25, there should be plenty more to come for an easy going member of the squad, visibly a friend to everyone who fits perfectly with Southgate's team ethos.

"I remember at the [2018] World Cup seeing all these videos of the fans celebrating, going wild. And I thought: 'I want to be a part of that'," Shaw told England's YouTube channel in the aftermath of his hard-earned part in the historic win over Germany.

"I'm [feeling] brilliant, it's so good. Everything about the last day or two has been unbelievable. I've not felt this happy in a long time."

History and odds will be stacked against Ukraine in their first ever European Championship quarter-final against England on Saturday.

The Three Lions have only lost one of their previous seven meetings with Ukraine, who never scored more than once in any of those matches.

That does not bode well when you consider England are yet to even concede once at Euro 2020, having become only the third side in Euros history to keep clean sheets in all of their first four games of a tournament.

If England do shut Ukraine out, they will match the record set by Italy at the 1990 World Cup of five successive clean sheets from the start of the competition.

 

While England fans may already be mentally preparing themselves for a second successive major tournament semi-final, Gareth Southgate acknowledged the Three Lions will arguably be out of their comfort zone for the first time in Euro 2020 as they travel to Rome.

"We've got to go away from Wembley, into a potentially quite hot climate, hardly any England fans in the stadium, and maybe a not particularly full crowd full stop," he said.

"And then there is this perception that all we've got to do is turn up, and we are on our way. We're very clear now that the total focus is on Saturday. We have to prepare the game in the right way, and our mentality is critical."

'The bigger they are, the harder they fall,' Ukraine will be telling themselves.

PLAYERS TO WATCH

Ukraine – Georgi Bushcan

The performances of Ukraine goalkeeper Bushchan have been largely positive, though the odd mistake has crept in – for example, he gifted Memphis Depay the opener in the group stage defeat to the Netherlands. Further to this, the goals prevented metric puts him at fault for 1.2 goals, the joint-third worst record at Euro 2020. If Andriy Shevchenko's men are to progress here, they will need Bushcan at the top of his game.

 

England – Harry Maguire

Manchester United defender Maguire has been a rock in his two Euro 2020 games, winning every single one of his aerial duels so far, but his importance to England goes beyond his physicality. His forward-thinking nature has been notable since his return, with his 11.5 progressive carries per 90 minutes being the best of everyone in the squad, while he and John Stones are also England's most direct carriers in possession, bringing the ball upfield 20 per cent of the time. With Ukraine likely to sit deep, Maguire will see a lot of the ball and therefore have significant influence in starting attacks.

KEY OPTA FACTS

- Andriy Yarmolenko has either scored (two) or assisted (three) five of Ukraine's eight European Championship goals. Indeed, his five goal involvements is level with Shevchenko (four goals, one assist) for the most by a Ukraine player at major tournaments (World Cup and Euros).

- Raheem Sterling has scored three of England's four goals at Euro 2020 so far, while only two players have ever scored more for the Three Lions in a single edition at the tournament – Alan Shearer in 1996 (five) and Wayne Rooney in 2004 (four).

- Coming into the quarter-final matches, only Italy (2.1) have a lower expected goals conceded total than England (2.7) at Euro 2020. England have faced just eight shots on target in their four games (two per game), their lowest ratio on record in a major tournament (since 1966 for World Cup and since 1980 for the European Championship).

- Ukraine's only previous quarter-final appearance in a major tournament ended in a 3-0 defeat to Italy in the 2006 World Cup. Ukraine have won two of their last three European Championship matches, more than they had in their first seven in the competition (W1 L6).

- Each of England's previous three quarter-final matches at the European Championship have gone to extra-time and penalties – after progressing from the first of these against Spain in 1996, England lost in penalty shootouts against Portugal in 2004 and Italy in 2012.

Gareth Southgate's refusal to bow to public pressure and pick an attacking England team has earned the respect of former manager Sven-Goran Eriksson.

Southgate has guided the Three Lions to the last eight at Euro 2020, reaching this stage with their first knockout tournament win over Germany since 1966.

But the manager's team selection has been the source of scrutiny.

Not since the 2018 World Cup semi-final against Croatia has Southgate named an unchanged side, a run of 34 consecutive matches seeing at least one alteration.

Despite this tinkering, the England boss has consistently named starting line-ups that have underwhelmed supporters.

Jack Grealish has started just seven of those 34 matches – and only one at the Euros – while Jadon Sancho, limited to six minutes so far in this campaign, is also not among the 12 players to have clocked 1,000 or more international minutes in this period (915).

The subsequent defensive solidity has paid off, however, for a team now versed in both a 4-3-3 or a 3-4-3.

England have kept six straight clean sheets, beginning a major tournament with four in a row for the first time since winning the World Cup in 1966.

Eriksson, England manager from 2000 to 2006, knows all about the difficulty of satisfying fans while selecting an effective XI.

He famously sought to find a way to fit Paul Scholes, Steven Gerrard and Frank Lampard into the same side and has been impressed by Southgate's resolve.

"Now you have to respect that because that's not easy," Eriksson told Stats Perform. "I know it's not easy.

 

"It's not easy in a club, but when you have a national team like England, everybody has an opinion. And if you don't win, you have 60 million managers or coaches telling you what you should have done.

"But the problem always in football is that, as a manager, you have to decide what to do, how to do it before the match, not after. So, I respect Southgate very much.

"You know how it is: now he is up in the sky, flying, and that's fair, that's good. But it was a little bit of a defensive team he put it out to start with – and if that had gone wrong, he would have been very, very much criticised.

"He won, he had [it] right and the decision he took was right. That's important."

Ukraine are next up and, given they are considered more straightforward opponents than Germany, calls will grow again to bring in Grealish, Sancho or Phil Foden.

"I don't think Southgate needs any advice from anyone – and he will not listen to it," Eriksson said.

But he added: "I think it's going to be very important for England that they can open up, and if you ask me, yeah, I would put in one more attacking guy, maybe, who can do things one against one.

"I think that will be important for the Ukraine game.

"But anyhow, whatever formation Southgate uses, England will win that game. I can't see any other result than that they go through."

Oleksandr Zinchenko says Ukraine must find a way to stop the "amazing" Raheem Sterling but they should not fear facing England in a Euro 2020 quarter-final on Saturday.

Ukraine beat Sweden 2-1 after extra time at Hampden Park on Tuesday courtesy of a last-gasp winner from Artem Dovbyk.

Andriy Shevchenko's side travel to Rome to face the Three Lions at the Stadio Olimpico, with Gareth Southgate's side having beaten Germany 2-0 at Wembley.

Sterling opened the scoring for England with his third goal of the tournament before Harry Kane sealed the victory.

Zinchenko, who was on target in the win over Sweden, knows Ukraine will have to keep a close eye on his Manchester City team-mate in the Eternal City.

"Raheem Sterling is one of the best wingers in the world. Right now he is in amazing form," said the full-back.

"He is great, he makes the difference. We obviously need to pay attention to him and we will need to try to somehow stop him because he’s on a roll now.

"Who is the strongest opponent that I have ever played? I have said several times that it's the footballers from Manchester City, those that I see every day at training."

 

England are the only team in the tournament who have not conceded a goal but Zinchenko says Ukraine should be motivated by the challenge of breaching their resolute defence.

"It is really difficult to score against England, they are really well organised," said Zinchenko.

"They have a really good set of footballers and the substitute bench probably costs [the same] as three Ukrainian teams.

"This shouldn't be really scary for us, this should motivate us. We need to give ourselves the highest aims, the highest goals, and I am sure that the coaching team will get the strategy for us.

"I sense myself that everything is possible in this life and we will do everything we can for it. I've watched pretty much all the games that England have played, except today because we were getting ready for our game.

"The first thing that I noticed is I know quite a lot of those players personally because I see them in the Premier League."

Andriy Shevchenko hailed his heroic Ukraine players following their dramatic 2-1 extra-time win over Sweden as he prepares to turn his focus to a Euro 2020 quarter-final showdown against England.

Ukraine progressed to the European Championship last eight for the first time thanks to Artem Dovbyk's last-gasp winner in extra time after Oleksandr Zinchenko had seen his opener cancelled out by Emil Forsberg on Tuesday.

Shevchenko's Ukraine will face England, who beat Germany 2-0 at Wembley earlier in the day, in Rome on Saturday after Dovbyk headed home at the end of 120 minutes.

Ukraine's only previous appearance in the knockout stages of a major competition came at the 2006 World Cup when eliminating Switzerland before losing to Italy in the last eight.

"I thank my team for all their efforts, for the heroism they have shown," head coach Shevchenko told a post-match media conference.

"Both teams played very well. It was an interesting match. Neither side wanted to lose so we got this drama at the end. 

"With this performance and commitment, our team has deserved the love of the whole country."

 

Shevchenko's side are still to keep a clean sheet at a European Championship, conceding at least once in each of their 10 games, but he felt his side's tactics were spot on against Sweden.

He added: "We knew how our team should play from the first minutes. We knew who could strengthen us [during the game]. The plan we had developed has worked well.

"We decided to protect the wide areas more. We asked our midfielders to work harder and changed Andriy Yarmolenko's position. We tried to control the game but it wasn't that way from time to time. But the team has fully fulfilled our plan."

Ukraine defender Zinchenko felt the victory answered some of the negativity which had come their way after an underwhelming group stage, which saw them only beat North Macedonia.

"It was hard for me to concentrate on this game because we had so much criticism for our three group games," he said.

"I felt I could give the team more. I'm very proud that we showed our country and the whole of Europe that we can achieve our goals.

"It's a historical achievement. My advice to everyone – let's celebrate, we only live once and we may never repeat these moments again."

Sweden counterpart Janne Andersson felt his team deserved credit despite exiting the tournament.

Marcus Danielson was sent off in extra time and Ukraine made the extra man count when Zinchenko's cross was headed in from close range by substitute Dovbyk at Hampden Park.

"We'll have to fly home and go our separate ways. Suddenly it all ends, this great thing we've been building together," he said.

"We've come close to achieving something really good. We leave this with flying colours, as Sweden hadn't passed a group stage since 2004."

After Monday saw a shock exit for world champions France and 14 goals across two games, Tuesday's last-16 ties at Euro 2020 had plenty to live up to.

But, while there was not quite as much goalmouth action this time around, there were plenty of intriguing talking points as two more sides booked their place in the quarter-finals.

First up, England claimed their first ever knockout-stage victory inside 90 minutes at a European Championship, vanquishing old rivals Germany at Wembley.

And then Ukraine needed the second-latest goal in the tournament's history to edge out Sweden in a tense battle for a last-eight berth.

Here, Stats Perform looks at the key Opta stats from another thrilling day of Euros action.

 

 

England 2-0 Germany: Three Lions break tournament hoodoo

England came into their last-16 tie knowing they would need to beat Germany in a competitive game at Wembley for the first time since the 1966 World Cup final to seal their place in the next round.

That this dismal three-match run against their rivals was finally ended owes much to Raheem Sterling, who bagged the opener to extend what has been a hugely successful tournament thus far.

The Manchester City forward has now scored 15 goals in his last 20 appearances in all competitions for England having gone 27 games without finding the net prior to this run.

His latest strike also meant he became only the second player to score each of the Three Lions' first three goals of an edition of a major tournament after Gary Lineker did so at the 1986 World Cup.

England are now 15 games unbeaten at Wembley in major tournaments and will hope to earn the chance to extend that run in the semi-finals and final this summer by getting past Ukraine in the quarters in Rome this weekend.

As for Germany, they saw the Joachim Low era end with a fifth winless game from their last six at the European Championships (D2 L3).

 

Ukraine 2-1 Sweden (aet): Shevchenko's men leave it late

Ukraine looked like they might cruise into the quarters when a dominant start was capped by Oleksandr Zinchenko becoming the fifth different City player to net at this year's Euros (a figure only matched by Atalanta).

But they perhaps did not account for Emil Forsberg grabbing his customary goal to become the first Sweden player to score in three consecutive major tournament appearances since Kennet Andersson at the 1994 World Cup.

With neither side able to add to those strikes in regulation, extra time was required for a fourth occasion in this year's last 16 – the most ever in a single knockout round at any European Championship.

However, the match would not reach penalties, with Artem Dovbyk scoring the second-latest goal in European Championship history (120 minutes and 37 seconds) to win it.

Only Turkey's Semih Senturk has managed to score later in a Euros match, doing so after 121 minutes and one second against Croatia in 2008.

As a result, Ukraine secured their place in the quarter-finals of a major tournament for only the second time (the last coming in the 2006 World Cup), while Sweden made it three knockout-stage defeats from three at the Euros (also against Germany in 1992 and the Netherlands in 2004).

If Tuesday's first knockout game at Euro 2020 was billed as a battle to secure a straightforward run to the final, the late kick-off was all about Ukraine and Sweden seizing an opportunity to prove the doubters wrong.

After overcoming their old rivals Germany at Wembley Stadium, England will be strongly favoured to reach the competition's showpiece by progressing through the kindest side of the draw.

Yet every other nation alongside them will also sense the possibility of making history at a tournament that has already seen its fair share of upsets.

It is Ukraine who will get the chance to shock the Three Lions in Rome on Saturday, having claimed a 2-1 win over Sweden with a goal in stoppage time of extra time.

And, though Andriy Shevchenko's side did not produce the most convincing of performances in winning, they showed enough to prove that they may yet keep a dream run going.

 

Two up top back in fashion

Strike pairings are often considered a relic of a bygone era but both Ukraine and Sweden started this game with two up top.

Swedish duo Alexander Isak and Emil Forsberg were arguably the more threatening throughout, with the latter in particular continuing his remarkable tournament.

The RB Leipzig midfielder took six shots - twice as many as any other player on the pitch managed - across the 120 minutes as he led the way. Those attempts returned one goal - Forsberg's fourth of the competition - but he would have been celebrating a victory had two fine efforts not cannoned back off the post in the second half.

As for Ukraine, they began with captain Andriy Yarmolenko alongside Roman Yaremchuk, and both showed why they might cause problems for opponents deeper into the competition.

The pair laid on a shot apiece for each other across their time on the pitch together, while Yarmolenko picked out a beauty of an assist for Oleksandr Zinchenko's opening goal.

That meant the West Ham man has now been directly involved in five goals for Ukraine at major tournaments (2 goals, 3 assists); the joint-most of any player for the country, along with his current manager Shevchenko (5).

As for Shevchenko the tactician, he was rewarded for sticking to his guns by keeping men in the Swedish box as Yarmolenko's replacement Artem Dovbyk headed home the winner.

England's defenders know they will have their hands full when they come up against Ukraine's forwards this weekend.

 

Lack of experience could hurt Ukraine

Prior to this outing, Ukraine had lost seven of their past eight European Championship games.

The only exception was the victory over minnows North Macedonia in their group that proved just enough to bring them to the knockout stages of this year's tournament.

Never before have the Ukrainians gone this deep at a Euros, nor have they ever done better than reaching the quarter-finals in World Cup history, doing so in 2006 when their manager Shevchenko was part of the squad a player.

That lack of experience and the extra minutes in the legs provided by extra time at Hampden Park will surely encourage England.

Gareth Southgate's side are aiming to follow up a World Cup semi-final in 2018 with another deep run at a major competition - know-how could be crucial.

Ukraine are not the only team still left standing who had to work overtime to progress, either. Their clash with Sweden was the fourth Euro 2020 last-16 tie to finish level at the end of 90 minutes (also Italy v Austria, Croatia v Spain and France v Switzerland), the most ever in a single knockout round.

Artem Dovbyk netted a last-gasp winner as Ukraine booked their place in the quarter-finals of Euro 2020 with a thrilling 2-1 extra-time victory over Sweden at Hampden Park.

Ukraine broke the deadlock when a passing move just before the half hour found Oleksandr Zinchenko at the back post and his rasping half-volley was too strong for Robin Olsen.

Sweden equalised on the stroke of half-time through Emil Forsberg's deflected effort from distance and the striker twice hit the woodwork after the break.

Marcus Danielson was sent off in extra time and Ukraine made the extra man count when Zinchenko's cross was headed in from close range by substitute Dovbyk to set up a last-eight tie with England.

Sweden began with the greater intensity but it was Ukraine who carved out the first meaningful effort on goal when Roman Yaremchuk's low shot was kept out by the diving Olsen.

Alexander Isak dragged an effort wide of the post for Sweden before a slick Ukraine interchange culminated in Andriy Yarmolenko's deft cross with the outside of his boot which Zinchenko crisply finished.

Sweden almost hit back instantly when Sebastian Larsson's opportunistic curling free-kick from long distance had Georgi Bushchan scrambling across goal.

The leveller soon followed, Forsberg showing quick feet to create a shooting opportunity from outside the box as his strike took a defection off Illia Zabarnyi and flew beyond Bushchan.

Both sides struck the woodwork early in an open start to the second half as Larsson and Forsberg grazed the post either side of Serhiy Sydorchuk's shot which rebounded off it.

Bushchan produced a superb diving save to keep out a Dejan Kulusevski curling shot which seemed destined for the top corner before Forsberg jinked inside and bent another effort against the crossbar.

Kulusevski had a chance for Sweden at the end of normal time when he controlled a long ball but his angled shot was kept out by a last-ditch block from Oleksandr Karavaev.

Sweden's Danielson was sent off in extra time following a VAR review for a dangerous high tackle on Artem Besedin which left the Ukraine player unable to play any further part.

Spot-kicks loomed but Dovbyk popped up with the winner, heading in Zinchenko's cross from close range in injury time at the end of 120 minutes.

Andriy Shevchenko insists Ukraine have "nothing to lose" against Sweden as his side aim to reach the European Championship quarter-finals for the first time.

Ukraine's only previous appearance in the knockout stages of a major competition came at the 2006 World Cup when eliminating Switzerland before losing to Italy in the last eight.

The Eastern European nation hardly boast the best of records at the Euros, either, having lost seven of their last eight games.

However, a 2-1 win over North Macedonia, bookended by defeats to the Netherlands and Austria, proved enough for Ukraine to progress as one of the best third-placed sides.

Sweden await at Hampden Park on Tuesday and head coach Shevchenko believes his players can be proud whatever the result in Glasgow.

"We have travelled a long way to be here. We have achieved the result we wanted and have nothing to lose now," he said. "Everything else will be a big bonus for us.

"I think we played a good group stage. We played well against the Dutch and we put in a good performance against North Macedonia. Austria were very strong opponents. 

"But Sweden are well prepared tactically and have good individual players."

Sweden topped a group containing Spain, Poland and Slovakia to reach the knockouts of the Euros for a third time, having made it to the 1992 semi-finals and quarter-finals in 2004.

Despite coming through a difficult group with seven points from nine, Sweden boss Janne Andersson is taking nothing for granted against Ukraine.

"They are a good team; they know how to switch from defence to attack," he said. "They looked worn out against Austria, but like us they've had some rest – even more actually.

"After the last game I gathered the players and told them I wouldn't want to be anywhere else in the world than in that room with them."

 


KEY PLAYERS

Sweden – Emil Forsberg 

The RB Leipzig man has been one of the star performers of Euro 2020 so far, scoring the only goal against Slovakia from the penalty spot before netting twice against Poland.

It has been quite the turnaround for the 29-year-old, who has now scored four goals in his last four games for Sweden, following a previous run of 11 games without a goal.

Forsberg could yet write his name in Swedish football folklore, with Kennet Andersson (five) and Martin Dahlin (four) the only players to score more than three goals for the country in a single major tournament, both doing so at the 1994 World Cup.

Ukraine – Andriy Yarmolenko

West Ham forward Yarmolenko scored twice and assisted another during the group stage, including a 25-yard goal of the tournament contender in the 3-2 loss to the Netherlands.

No Ukraine player has ever been involved in more goals than Yarmolenko at a major tournament, level with team-mate Roman Yaremchuk, who has also played a big part in his side's progression to the last 16.


KEY OPTA FACTS

– This will be the fifth meeting between Sweden and Ukraine, with Sweden's only victory coming in a friendly in August 2011 (D1 L2).

– The last meeting between Sweden and Ukraine was at Euro 2012, with Ukraine coming from behind to win 2-1 thanks to a brace from current manager Shevchenko.

– Of the teams to reach the last 16 at Euro 2020, no side faced more shots on target in the group stages than Ukraine (16, level with Wales).

– Sweden made the fewest successful passes (591) and had the lowest passing accuracy (69.9 per cent) of any side in the group stages at Euro 2020. Of the teams to reach the last 16, they also had the lowest average possession rate (29.6 per cent).

– Sweden scored with 44 per cent of their shots on target in the group stages of Euro 2020 (4/9), with only Portugal having a higher such ratio of teams to reach the last 16 (50 per cent - 7/14).

Denmark lit up Euro 2020 on Monday as they thumped Russia 4-1 to finish second in Group B and progress to the last 16.

Belgium ran out winners in that group after a 2-0 win over Finland, with Markku Kanerva's side finishing third by virtue of an inferior goal difference to Denmark.

In Group C, the Netherlands sealed top spot with a 3-0 victory against rock-bottom North Macedonia, with Austria joining them in the knockout stages after overcoming Ukraine, who finished third. 

Using Opta data, Stats Perform takes a look at some of the best facts from Monday's games.

Russia 1-4 Denmark: Hjulmand's side progress in spectacular fashion

Denmark produced one of the standout displays of the tournament so far to set up a last-16 clash with Wales in Amsterdam on Saturday. 

The sensational win meant Denmark became the first team in European Championship history to reach the knockout stages of the competition having lost their first two group-stage games.

It also marked the first time Denmark had scored four goals in a major tournament game since a 4-1 victory over Nigeria at the 1998 World Cup.

Mikkel Damsgaard put Denmark ahead shortly before the interval to become his country's youngest ever goalscorer at a major tournament, with the forward also the first player born in the 2000s to score in the European Championship. 

Yussuf Poulsen added a second, the RB Leipzig man netting in consecutive games for Denmark for only the second time, also doing so in June 2018 against Mexico in a friendly and Peru at the World Cup.

Artem Dzyuba then scored his 30th international goal to move level with Aleksandr Kerzhakov as the all-time joint top-scorer for Russia – since the dissolution of the Soviet Union (USSR), but Andreas Christensen and Joakim Maehle wrapped up a memorable win for Kasper Hjulmand's side.

Finland 0-2 Belgium: Martinez's Red Devils march on in style

This latest victory means Belgium have won all three group games at back-to-back major tournaments, while it is the first time they have won all of their group fixtures at a single European Championship tournament.

Belgium went ahead in the 74th minute when Thomas Vermaelen's header from a corner bounced up onto the post and went in off the unfortunate Lukas Hradecky's hand.

Hradecky became just the second goalkeeper in European Championship history to score an own goal after Wojciech Szczesny for Poland against Slovakia earlier in the tournament.

Belgium's Romelu Lukaku then netted his third goal of the tournament seven minutes later.

Since making his major international tournament debut for Belgium in 2014, the Inter forward has scored 10 goals in such competitions – only Portugal superstar Cristiano Ronaldo and France's Antoine Griezmann have scored more major tournament goals for a European nation during this period (11 each).

Belgium's Jeremy Doku (19 years and 25 days), meanwhile, became the second youngest player to appear for the nation at a European Championship tournament after Enzo Scifo (18 years and 115 days).

North Macedonia 0-3 Netherlands: Oranje make history in third consecutive win

Memphis Depay and Georginio Wijnaldum starred as the Netherlands won all three of their group-stage games at the European Championship for the third time (also 2000 and 2008) – more than any other side in the competition.

Their latest win meant the Oranje have scored two goals in 10 successive games for the first time ever, while they now have 65 goals at the European Championship finals, leapfrogging France into second place to sit behind only Germany (76) in the competition's history. 

Barcelona-bound Depay got the Netherlands on their way with his 50th goal involvement in 67 appearances for the national team (28 goals and 22 assists). He has now been involved in 13 goals in his last 10 games for the Oranje in all competitions (nine goals and four assists).

In his 78th appearance for the Netherlands, Paris Saint-Germain recruit Wijnaldum scored his 24th and 25th goals. Fifteen of these strikes have been in his 25 games since the start of 2019, with no player scoring more for the Dutch during this time.

North Macedonia, meanwhile, are just the fourth team to lose 100 per cent of their matches at their first appearance in the European Championships, after Turkey in 1996, Denmark in 1964 and France in 1960.

Ukraine 0-1 Austria: Baumgartner seals last-16 spot

This win meant Austria progressed to the knockout stages of a European Championship for the first time in their history. 

They were in dominant mood against their meek opponents, taking 18 shots – a tally they have only bettered twice before in a European Championship game (23 against Iceland in 2016 and 20 against Croatia in 2008).

Austria only found the back of the net once, though, Christoph Baumgartner becoming the youngest player ever to score for the nation at the European Championship, aged 21 years and 324 days.

He was teed up by Real Madrid's David Alaba, who registered his third assist in six appearances for Austria in the competition – two more than any other Austrian. 

Ukraine, meanwhile, have failed to keep a clean sheet in any of their nine games at the European Championship – the most matches played in the competition by a team without having their defence breached.

Oleksandr Zinchenko criticised Ukraine's mentality and described their behaviour as "unacceptable" after they lost 1-0 to Austria to take their Euro 2020 hopes out of their hands.

Ukraine needed only a point from their final Group C match to be sure of second place and a last-16 meeting with Italy at Wembley on Saturday.

However, Christoph Baumgartner's first-half goal gave Austria a narrow victory to book a clash with the Azzurri, advancing from the group stage for the first time at a European Championship.

Despite the narrow margin of defeat, the scoreline flattered Ukraine.

Austria had 13 shots before half-time – behind only Italy's 14 versus Turkey in terms of the most in a first half at the tournament so far – along with eight corners.

The interval slowed their momentum a little, but Austria still outshot Ukraine 18 to five, their chances boasting a far superior combined expected goals value of 1.5 (0.3 for Ukraine).

Andriy Shevchenko's side had thrilled in a defeat to the Netherlands and then beating North Macedonia, yet they must now wait to see if they finish as one of the four best third-placed finishers.

"I'm so disappointed," Manchester City's Zinchenko told UEFA. "I don't even know what to say.

"Our performance in the first half was unacceptable. The way we behaved on the pitch was unacceptable.

"We felt very well ahead of the game in the training sessions, but nothing worked for us tonight.

 

"I don't think Austria's physical qualities were the key reason for our defeat. I think it's more about the mentality.

"We have to be the winners on the pitch. We have to fight and try to win all individual duels. But now we, probably, just have to accept our level."

Zinchenko's emotions were in contrast to those of Austria coach Franco Foda, although he was not impressed by a question relating to Marko Arnautovic's performance at his news conference.

Arnautovic returned from suspension to start for the first time at the finals, but he hit the target with only one of his four shots and was guilty of one particularly glaring miss.

"We managed to achieve something historic. We wrote history," Foda replied. "And you ask me such a question? Just be happy with us, with the team.

"You ask me such a question, how I would evaluate the performance of Marko Arnautovic? Just tell us we played well.

"Don't be mad at me, but I don't like questions like that. I don't want to answer them.

"I'm happy with him, I'm satisfied with him and he showed on the pitch what I was expecting."

Austria deservedly defeated Ukraine 1-0 in Bucharest to finish second in Group C and set up a last-16 meeting with Italy as their beaten opponents wait to learn their fate.

Only goals scored separated the sides heading into Monday's matchday three clash, but Austria had to win to leapfrog Ukraine and secure a top-two place along with the Netherlands.

Christoph Baumgartner's first-half goal ensured they progressed from the group stage of a European Championship for the first time and their prize is a trip to Wembley to face the in-form Azzurri on Saturday.

Although Ukraine could yet join them in the knockout stage, Andriy Shevchenko's men underwhelmed and might do well to advance as one of the four best third-placed teams with only three points and a negative goal difference.

Austria were on the front foot from the outset but created little of note until David Alaba delivered a dangerous corner into the centre of the box and Baumgartner toed his finish beyond Georgi Bushchan after 21 minutes.

Baumgartner had taken a blow to his head prior to scoring and eventually made way after going down again, but his team-mates continued to pose the greater threat and Marko Arnautovic should have done better than prod a tame effort wide three minutes before the break.

Ukraine's best first-half chance saw Daniel Bachmann slightly fortunate as his parry from Mykola Shaparenko's shot narrowly evaded Andriy Yarmolenko.

Shevchenko's side showed scant improvement after the interval, yet Austria's inability to add a second set up a nervy last 10 minutes.

Even then, Ukraine could not muster a second effort on target, their exciting play in the first two matches quickly forgotten as they failed to prey on their opponents' evident nerves.

 

What does it mean? First-half flurry just about enough

In the first half, Austria had eight corners and 13 shots – second only to Italy's 14 against Turkey through 45 minutes in the tournament. This attacking endeavour secured their first ever half-time lead at a European Championship.

It was still an extremely profligate performance, though, and Austria will surely be punished by Italy if they similarly fail to take their chances again.

Alaba always looks most likely

Having fulfilled a variety of roles for his country, Alaba settled back into the left-back position in which he established himself at Bayern Munich. Even from there, though, he was Austria's chief creative force.

Four first-half key passes brought Alaba only one shy of Martin Harnik's single-game Austria record at the Euros (five vs Croatia in 2008).

Arnautovic almost costs his country

While it might be a little harsh to criticise an Austria player after a vital victory, Arnautovic's failure to effectively put the game beyond Ukraine could so easily have proven costly.

Returning to the side following suspension, Arnautovic had four shots but scarcely troubled Bushchan, who faced 18 attempts yet only four on target.

What's next?

Austria know their travel plans, but Ukraine – already behind four-point Switzerland, third in Group A – must wait and see if they have another match or are instead heading home.

Austria head coach Franco Foda has seen his team match pre-tournament favourites France for shots and out-do Les Bleus for expected goals at Euro 2020 – but their last-16 hopes still hang in the balance.

Foda has confirmed striker Marko Arnautovic will start against Ukraine on Monday as both teams chase a victory to finish behind the Netherlands in Group C.

Arnautovic scored the third and final goal in his country's opening win over North Macedonia, converting a one-on-one opportunity having come off the bench in the second half in Budapest.

However, comments made towards opposing players as he celebrated in the immediate aftermath saw him handed a one-match ban for "insulting another player" by UEFA.

The former Stoke City and West Ham forward, who apologised for his conduct but insisted he was not a racist, sat out a 2-0 defeat to the Netherlands. Now, though, he is set to be named in the XI for the clash in the Hungarian capital.

"We decided to let him play from the first minute. They (Ukraine) can get better prepared, but we are happy that he can play again," Foda told the media.

"However, we shouldn't mistake that we are only dependent on him. We want to not have the responsibility on one player, so we have to be more effective, more clinical.

"We showed a good performance against the Netherlands, but in the last third the final pass was missing. We weren't a threat to the opposing defenders, so we want to improve."

Austria have had 19 goal attempts so far in their opening two games – the same as France have managed in Group F – and have built an expected goals (xG) aggregate of 2.67 so far (France: 2.24). Ukraine, however, have bettered both tallies by Foda's team, with 24 efforts at goal and an impressive xG of 4.26.

The Austrians and Ukrainians have met twice before in friendlies - winning one apiece - but this will be their first encounter at a major tournament.

Ukraine know a draw will be enough for them to take second place, and a point apiece could take both sides into the knockout stage, yet Andriy Shevchenko insists his side will not be taking into consideration such scenarios when they step onto the pitch.

"This kind of thinking can be punished a lot, so all the talk of agreeing to have a draw should be stopped immediately," the Ukraine coach said. "It's just not right.

"The teams understand how important this game is. We will be playing with the understanding of what is in front of us, what result we need to get to the next stage."

PLAYERS TO WATCH

Ukraine - Roman Yaremchuk

Yaremchuk has scored in each of his appearances at Euro 2020, netting with his previous two efforts at goal. Prior to this year's tournament, only seven players have found the net in their first three matches at a European Championship, most recently Gareth Bale for Wales at Euro 2016.

Austria - Marko Arnautovic

Not quite fit enough to start against North Macedonia, Arnautovic made an impact after coming on with the game locked at 1-1. He had just 22 touches in his cameo appearance but now gets the chance to have a greater involvement as Austria look to seal a spot in the last 16.

 

KEY OPTA FACTS

- The two previous games between Ukraine and Austria produced eight goals, an average of four per match.
- Ukraine ended a run of six consecutive defeats at the European Championships with a 2-1 win over North Macedonia last time out. They have not won consecutive matches at a major tournament since beating Saudi Arabia and Tunisia in the group stages of the 2006 World Cup.
- Austria have lost their last group match in each of their three most recent major tournament appearances – to Italy at the 1998 World Cup, Germany at Euro 2008 and Iceland at Euro 2016.
- Andriy Yarmolenko has scored in each of his last three matches for Ukraine, netting four goals, and is looking to score in four consecutive appearances for his country for the first time. Yarmolenko has been directly involved in four of Ukraine’s six goals (2 goals, 2 assists) at Euro 2020.
- Austria have had just seven shots on target in their two matches at EURO 2020 – only three of those efforts at goal have come from players in the starting XI, with 57 per cent of their shots on target coming via substitutes (4/7).

Belgium and the Netherlands joined Italy in booking their place in the knockout stages of Euro 2020 with victories over Denmark and Austria respectively.

The world's top-ranked side Belgium had to bounce back from a goal down to beat an inspired Denmark, with both teams paying tribute to Christian Eriksen after 10 minutes as the midfielder continues his recovery from a cardiac arrest.

Roberto Martinez's side need a point in their final Group B match to make certain of top spot, but the Netherlands are already through as Group C winners after seeing off Austria.

Ukraine also picked up all three points against North Macedonia in Thursday's action – just their second-ever victory at the European Championships.

Using Opta data, we take a look at some of the best facts from across the day's action.

Ukraine 2-1 North Macedonia: Shevchenko's men end losing Euros streak

Andriy Yarmolenko and Roman Yaremchuk were on target for the second match running to end Ukraine's six-game losing streak at the European Championships.

With Yarmolenko and Yaremchuk's first-half goals, Ukraine became the first nation to have the same two players score in their first two games at a single Euros.

Ezgjan Alioski pulled one back at the second attempt after his penalty was saved, making it two goals in three games – as many as in his previous 17 for North Macedonia.

His penalty was given after a foul on Goran Pandev, who – at at 37 years and 325 days – is the oldest player to win a spot-kick in the Euros since data was first recorded in 1980.

Ruslan Malinovskyi failed to convert from 12 yards late on in a game which saw both sides win a penalty in the competition for the first time since England v France in 2004.

It means four of the six penalties taken at Euro 2020 have not been converted. The last tournament with more was Euro 2000 (five).

Denmark 1-2 Belgium: Red Devils bounce back from early setback

Belgium showed why they are ranked number one in the world as they recovered from an early setback to make it 11 wins from their last 12 group games at major competitions.

However, they had to do things the hard way after Yussuf Poulsen struck early on in Copenhagen.

Poulsen opened the scoring after 99 seconds – the second-earliest goal ever in the tournament, behind only Dmitry Kirichenko for Russia against Greece in 2004 (65 seconds).

The one shot on target Belgium managed in the first half came via Dries Mertens, who was earning his 100th cap for his country – the fifth Belgian to reach that landmark.

But the half-time introduction of Kevin De Bruyne for Mertens transformed the Red Devils, the playmaker setting up Thorgan Hazard's leveller and then drilling in the winner.

De Bruyne's fantastic strike was teed up by Eden Hazard, who joins the Manchester City star as the two European players to assist a goal at each of the last four major tournaments.

Belgium survived a nervy finish as they won their first two European Championship matches for the first time, while Denmark have lost their first two for the first time since 2000.

Netherlands 2-0 Austria: Faultless Oranje ease through

The Netherlands followed up their opening-game win against Ukraine with a routine victory against Austria in Amsterdam.

It is the third time the Oranje have won their opening two Euros matches, having previously done so in 2000 and 2008, when they exited the competition at the semi-final and quarter-final stage respectively.

Frank de Boer's men are now unbeaten in their last nine matches at major tournaments, which is the longest run by a European nation since Portugal went 12 without defeat between 2014 and 2018.

Memphis Depay opened the scoring for the Netherlands from the penalty spot, the Lyon forward's eighth goal for his country since De Boer took charge last September, with only Belgium's Romelu Lukaku scoring more (10) across all competitions for a European side over that period.

Denzel Dumfries added the second goal and is just the second Netherlands player to net in his first two appearances at the Euros after Ruud van Nistelrooy in 2004, this after the right-back failed to score in his first 19 senior caps.

One of the unsung stars for the hosts was Dumfries' fellow defender Matthijs de Ligt, who completed 100 per cent of his 40 passes – a record for a Netherlands player in a European Championship match since records began in 1980.

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