We’ve reached day six of these European Championships and the second round of group stage fixtures are about to get underway.
Last night saw the first true heavyweight clash of the tournament as France beat Germany 1-0 in Munich thanks to a Mat Hummels own goal, while Cristiano Ronaldo made his mark with a late brace in Portugal’s 3-0 win over Hungary.
Today, Finland and Russia were the first sides to play their second matches, the former having won their opener against Denmark in a game that will forever be remembered for Christian Eriksen’s horrifying collapse and the health of the Inter Milan midfielder is still at the forefront of everyone’s minds.
This time around, however, Finland fell to a 1-0 defeat. Later, Wales face a huge game against Turkey. Having taken a point from their opener against Switzerland, Robert Page’s side are well in contention but know they face the might of Italy on the final day and so need a positive result today.
The Italians then round off the day’s action and can become the first side to book their place in the last-16, should they beat the Swiss.
We’ll also have all the build-up to Friday’s huge clash between England and Scotland at Wembley, which is now little more than 48 hours away.
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Mario Fernandes escapes serious injury
Russia have confirmed that Mario Fernandes did not suffer a spinal injury after his heavy fall in Wednesday’s 1-0 win over Finland in their Group B match in St Petersburg.
Full back Fernandes had a rough fall in the first half after an aerial duel which saw him fall on his back and neck. The 30-year-old was taken off the pitch on a stretcher and taken to the hospital for scans.
“Fernandes was suspected of having a thoracic spine injury,” the Russian team said in a statement.
“According to the scan results, Fernandes does not have a spinal injury. He is flying with the team to Moscow and will be under the supervision of the doctors of the Russian national team.”
Scotland a ‘dangerous enemy’
Former England captain Terry Butcher says Gareth Southgate’s side need to forget their winning start to Euro 2020 and focus everything on overcoming Scotland.
“I think Scotland are going to be a dangerous enemy – they always are, even more so now they’ve lost the first game,” he told the PA news agency.
“They would feel unlucky that they’ve lost the first game because it wasn’t anything between the teams apart from the finishing. I thought they looked alright, I thought they looked good and they’ll certainly give England a hard time come Friday.
“England have got to forget about the Croatia game and forget about everything else because this game takes care of itself, it’s on its own merits England-Scotland.”
We’re back under way in Saint Petersburg.
Finland 0-1 Russia
The hosts have the breakthrough. A fine finish from Aleksey Miranchuk has Russia ahead just before the break.
Robertson: Let’s prove doubters wrong
Andy Robertson says Scotland are keen to show what they can do against rivals England and earn some respect.
The two old rivals face off at Wembley on Friday, with Scotland looking to bounce back after defeat in their opening game to the Czech Republic. England will be looking to make it six points from two games having beaten Croatia last time out.
Robertson knows the size of the occasion and the Liverpool full-back wants to use it to gain his nation the attention they deserve.
“I think we’re probably respected more now because we’ve qualified for a tournament but we’re still not as respected as much as we would all like,” said Robertson.
“A chance to play against England is a chance to show people that doubt Scottish football what we can do. We gave them a tough game in 2017 and we’ll need the same performance levels as that night.”
Finland look to have taken the lead through a superb diving header from Pohjanpalo, but it’s ruled out by VAR for offside.
Finland vs Russia
The first game of the day is underway in St. Petersburg. Finland can go through to the knockouts with a win.
Arnautovic slapped with ban
Austria forward Marko Arnautovic has been handed a one match ban for an abusive celebration during their win over North Macedonia.
The former Stoke and West Ham forward, who now plays in China for Shanghai Port, had to be restrained by team-mate David Alaba after scoring in the 89th minute.
Arnautovic, who is of Serbian heritage, appeared to make comments towards opposition players and then turned towards spectators. Reports alleged his initial remarks were aimed at defender Egzon Bejtulai and Ezgjan Alioski, who both have Albanian roots.
Arnautovic later apologised for his outburst, but insisted he was not a racist.
UEFA appointed an ethics and disciplinary investigator on Tuesday and confirmed on Wednesday the issuing of a one-match ban.
The tournament organisers said in a statement that its appeals body had decided to “suspend Austrian Football Association player, Marko Arnautovic, for the next (1) UEFA representative team competition match for which he would be otherwise eligible, for insulting another player”.
No case for Rudiger
Antonio Rudiger will face no further action over his ‘bite’ on Paul Pogba during France vs Germany last night, UEFA have confirmed to Standard Sport.
Finland vs Russia
After the hell of a day without a 2pm game yesterday, Russia and Finland face off in the early slot this afternoon, and here is how they line up.
Finland XI: Hradecky; O’Shaughnessy, Arajuuri, Toivio; Uronen, Kamara, Schüller, Lod, Raitala; Pukki, Pohjanpalo
Russia XI: Safonov; Barinov, Dzhikiya, Diveev; Fernandes, Zobnin, Ozdoev, Kuzyayev; Miranchuk, Golovin; Dzyuba