Daily Archives: June 17, 2016

USA the first to get through to Copa America semi-finals

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Copa America quarter-final

USA 2 – 1 Ecuador

USA’s quarter final encounter against Ecuador ended at 2-1 in favour of the host nation, and they will be the first team to move into the semi-finals of Copa America Centenario.

Right in the middle of the first half, Bobby Wood gets to a through ball and passes it to Jermaine Jones. Jones then lifts a cross to Dempsey, who heads the ball into the back of the net.

It also lifts Dempsey to level on goal tally with Lionel Messi and Philippe Coutinho – all three are now tied on top with 3 goals. But Dempsey’s only realistic competitor for the honour is Messi, after Coutinho followed Brazil in their exit from the tournament.

As the game continued into half-time, an interesting exchange saw two players sent off in a single incident. Antonio Valencia and Jermaine Jones were both sent off as they tangled up near the touchline; Valencia on a second yellow and Jones on a straight red.

In the replay, what the referee clearly saw was confirmed – that Jones had put a fist in Arroyo’s face and appeared to swing it a little bit. The match in Seattle proceeds on a 10v10 format as Jones will sit out the semi-finals.

As the game began the swing either way, Bobby Wood led another American charge, playing a through ball to find Matt Besler, who then predictably passes it to Dempsey. The captain crosses it to the far post to Gyasi Zardes, who taps it into an empty net.

Ecuador then finally responded with their first goal, scoring a set piece. The free kick on America’s left was sent to Arroyo, who hammers a low shot to beat Brad Guzan to his right. And with that, the American keeper’s clean sheet record ends after 301 minutes.

With a quarter of an hour to go, Ecuador searched desperately for their equalizer, but the game ultimately belonged to the US as they pushed boldly up front. Dominating the game, they held off Ecuador whenever they came, and then the final whistle rang.

Dempsey is subsequently announced as the man-of-the-match. True to form, the captain was vital for his national team for the entire tournament, scoring 3 goals in 3 games and assisting in almost every other.

And with their latest victory, USA progresses through the tournament and will either face Argentina or Venezuela next.

Euro 2016 round up: results and match predictions

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Group A

France vs Albania (2-0)

Romania vs Switzerland (1-1)

Euro 2016 round up results and match predictions

France left it late again as Antoine Griezmann finally finds his mark while Dimitri Payet scores his second in the European tournament to sink Albania by 2 goals to nil.

Griezmann ended Albania’s stubborn resistance by heading in Adil Rami’s right-wing cross, while Payet sealed the game with the final kick. Both attempts were the game’s only two shots of target.

Meanwhile, Switzerland conceded a penalty early on, and were forced to equalize after the break.

Referee Sergei Karasev pointed to the spot after Stephan Lichsteiner grabbed a handful of Alexandru Chipciu’s shirt inside the box, and Bogdan Stancu puts it in despite stumbling as he struck the ball.

Switzerland was lucky to have even a point as they strived to find a way past their resolute opponents. It was also a rare error on Romaina’s part; a corner was mistakenly cleared to Admir Mehmedi’s path, and his subsequent first-time strike from 12 yards was good.

Group Standings


Group B

Russia vs Slovakia (1-2)

England vs Wales (2-1)

group b

England gets their first win in the European Championship with a comeback victory against Wales by 2-1.

Gareth Bale opened the scoreboard with a 30-yard free kick direct shot just before the break; a lapse from England keeper Joe Hart allows the ball to slip within the post and into the back of the net.

With an early exit looming, Roy Hodgson switched struggling forwards Harry Kane and Raheem Sterling for Jamie Vardy and Daniel Sturridge. Vardy equalised with his first shot before Hodgson brought on Marcus Rashford and went for all-out attack.

It was effective, England dominated the entire game. But while the Welsh team was effectively suppressed, they defended solid enough to keep them out up until injury time. Then Sturridge sealed their fate as he work his way into the area and poke past keeper Wayne Hennessey.

Meanwhile, Slovakia also celebrates their first 3 points in Group B after winning against Russia. Marek Hamsik sets up Vladimir Weiss, who cut inside and side-footed Slovakia ahead. He then scored a dazzling one for Slovakia’s second as he received a short corner out wide before firing a shot in off the post.

Russia, who face disqualification if their fans misbehave inside stadiums, dared the wrath of UEFA as a flare ignites among their supporters when Denis Glushakov headed in their consolation goal late on.

Group Standings


Group C

Germany vs Poland (0-0)

Northern Ireland vs Ukraine (2-0)

group c

Northern Ireland made a historic win over Ukraine with a solid 2-0 score to mark their first win at a European Championship.

Early in the second half, Gareth McAuley headed in a perfectly delivered free-kick from Oliver Norwood before a hailstorm in Lyon forced the players off for two minutes. After the delay, Nial McGinn finished bottom-placed Ukraine off at injury time as he pounced on a rebound, earning Northern Ireland’s first major tournament finals in 34 years.

Ukraine’s elimination was then confirmed as Germany drew goalless against Poland later, which in turn ensures that Northern Ireland could confirm themselves in the knockout stages.

Group Standings

3.Northern Ireland210103

Upcoming Matches and Predictions:

Czech Republic vs Croatia (1-1)

Spain vs Turkey (2-0)

Italy vs Sweden (2-1)

Belgium vs Republic of Ireland (0-0)

Iceland vs Hungary (1-1)

Portugal vs Austria (2-0)