Euro 2024: Today at Euro 2024: Spain demolish Croatia and Italy recover from Albania shock

Euro 2024: Today at Euro 2024: Spain demolish Croatia and Italy recover from Albania shock

Saturday saw Euro 2024 enter its first full day and the festival of football continued to provide entertainment after Germany’s opening night dismantling of a sorry Scotland side.

Hungary and Switzerland faced off in the second match from Group A, whilst Group B saw Spain take on Croatia and Italy go against Albania.

Whilst much of the focus was on Croatia‘s attempt to exact revenge on Spain for their elimination in the 2022 World Cup, it could be argued that it was the match which provided the least competition.

Sunday saw a continuation of high-intensity crowds descending on the stadiums in Germany, proving what a treasure it is to host a tournament in one single nation.

Fans are finding it relatively easy to travel and have done so in great numbers to support their respective nations.

Switzerland 3-1 Hungary

Switzerland began their campaign with a squad that many of us have become accustomed to. A lot of the players who have featured over the past decade were involved again, as they got off to an acceptable start against Hungary.

The reality is that with Germany in the group, it will be the matches between the remaining three teams which will decide the final standings.


Switzerland got the job done after a strong first-half showing which saw goals from both Kwadwo Duah and Michel Aebischer give the Swiss a 2-0 lead.

However, as they have often done in previous tournaments, Switzerland lost concentration in the second-half and invited Hungary back into the game.

Barnabas Varga scored a powerful header in the 66th minute, but in truth they had more chances to equalize before a returning Breel Embolo scored a decisive goal in injury-time.

Switzerland will take a key three points which will probably be enough to see them qualify, but there are serious defensive concerns.

Spain 3-0 Croatia

England fans will know better than anyone to write Croatia off, yet Sunday’s matchup with Spain looked very much like a case of too many miles on the clock for many of their veteran players.

Despite a rather ordinary Spanish team being put in front of them on paper, Luka Modric, Marcelo Brozovic and others were barely in the game.

Alvaro Morata got a welcome opening goal which will go some way to silence the voices of those who felt the striker shouldn’t have been selected.

Petr JosekAP

Fabian Ruiz ran the game in midfield for La Roja, adding an excellent goal himself before half-time to make it 2-0.

Lamine Yamal became the youngest player to ever play at a European Championship by playing against Croatia at just 16 years old, and he added an assist with a perfect cross for Dani Carvajal to convert just before the break.

With the introduction of English officials for the first time in Euro 2024, there was unsurprisingly a controversial incident late on.

Croatia were awarded a penalty for a foul by Rodri, which looked to have denied a clear goal-scoring opportunity.

However, the Spanish midfielder was only shown a yellow card and Croatia subsequently missed the spot-kick.

Yet, Ivan Perisic was first to the rebound and provided a cross for Bruno Petkovic to score, yet the former Spurs and Inter winger was deemed to have encroached on the spot-kick and Spain got out of jail with a free-kick.

Italy 2-1 Albania

Dortmund played host to their first game of the tournament when Italy and Albania faced off on Saturday evening, and the raucous crowd was given a goal to enjoy in under 30 seconds.

In what will officially go down as the quickest goal ever scored at a European Championship, Nedim Bajrami gave Albania a shock lead when he received the ball straight from an Italian throw-in.


He made no mistake and blasted the ball into the roof of the net beyond Gianluigi Donnarumma.

However, Italy showed their class and began to exert pressure virtually from the resultant kick-off and by half-time it was 2-1 thanks to a smart header at the back-post from Alessandro Bastoni and a stunning volley from Nicolo Barella.

Despite a drop in intensity from the defending champions in the second-half, Albania were unable to find an equalizer and the second day of Euro 2024 ended with the tournament still awaiting its first draw.

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