Belgium go through with goalless draw

Belgium……0

Ukraine……..0

There was no discernible difference between the teams in Stuttgart as Belgium advanced to the round of 16 as runners-up in Group E, while Ukraine exited the group at the bottom. Belgium has secured a spot in the round of 16 at UEFA EURO 2024 after finishing as runners-up in Group E, thanks to a goalless draw with Ukraine, whose own chances of advancing were eliminated. Both teams had a nervous start at the Stuttgart Arena, with a lot on the line as all four teams entered the evening with three points each.

The captain of Belgium, Kevin De Bruyne, created the first clear opportunity of the game by embarking on a skillful run before delivering an excellent through ball to Romelu Lukaku. However, Lukaku failed to connect properly with his shot from close range, allowing Ukraine goalkeeper Anatoliy Trubin to collect the ball comfortably.

De Bruyne himself came close to scoring as he attempted a clever free-kick, aiming to catch Trubin off guard at his near post. Unfortunately, his effort narrowly missed the target.

The Red Devils maintained control of the ball throughout the second half, but Ukraine held their ground. Lukaku attempted another curling shot, but Trubin made the save.

Ukraine desperately needed a goal, so they made a triple substitution in the 70th minute to try and secure victory. However, it was Belgium who continued to pose the greatest threat. Yannick Carrasco unleashed a powerful shot that was expertly parried away.

Artem Dovbyk had a golden opportunity with only ten minutes remaining. He received the ball in space on the edge of the box, but his shot found the side netting instead of the back of the net as time ticked away.

In the closing moments, Georgiy Sudakov embarked on a dazzling solo run. The goal seemed within reach, but his shot lacked power from just inside the box, leaving Ukraine once again unable to find a way through.

With Slovakia and Romania drawing 1-1 in the group’s other match, all the teams ended with four points. Belgium finished second to Romania based on goals scored, while Ukraine came fourth due to their inferior goal difference.

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Line-ups

Ukraine: Trubin; Tymchyk, Zabarnyi, Svatok (Yarmolenko 81), Matviyenko, Mykolenko (Zinchenko 58); Shaparenko (Vanat 70), Brazhko (Stepanenko 70), Sudakov; Yaremchuk (Malinovskyi 70), Dovbyk

Belgium: Casteels; Castagne, Faes, Theate, Vertonghen; De Bruyne, Onana, Tielemans (Mangala 62); Trossard (Carrasco 62), Lukaku (Openda 90), Doku (Bakayoko 77)

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