Spain’s young guns fire, France win 3-0

Spain’s young guns fire, France win 3-0

Spain’s players celebrate after scoring against Lithuania. ap/pti

London, June 9

Spain’s group of young debutants beat Lithuania 4-0 in a warm-up match for the European Championship.

The Spain team was made up of players from the under-21 squad, as well as its coach, after captain Sergio Busquets tested positive for Covid. From the 20 players called up for the match, 19 had never played for the senior national team.

1 day to go

The friendly counted as a first-team match, with players getting caps and an official debut for coach Luis de la Fuente with the main squad.

De la Fuente named 10 debutants plus Bryan Gil in the starting line-up.

Benzema concern

Karim Benzema’s return to international soccer continues to go awry as the France forward limped off injured in his team’s 3-0 victory over Bulgaria.

Benzema had a penalty saved and hit the post last week in his first appearance for France in nearly six years.

He lasted just 41 minutes on Tuesday before being forced off. But France coach Didier Deschamps has brushed off concerns, indicating that it is just a dead leg. — AP/PTI

Fans rewarded for UEFA’s multi-country event

It seemed ambitious nine years ago when UEFA said it would organise the Euro 2020 in 13 different cities around the continent. It seemed optimistic last year when UEFA decided to stick to a 12-city plan after postponing Euro 2020 when the coronavirus pandemic was declared. Now Euro 2020 will kick off in 11 cities, separated by four time zones and up to 4,700km. Yet the quirky, one-time-only hosting plan looks to be the best result fans could hope for with the coronavirus continuing to limit international travel. Nine of the 11 hosts — all except Azerbaijan and Romania — qualified for the 24-team tournament, giving tens of thousands of fans the chance to see at least two home games. That’s a better outcome than having a single host nation, like France in 2016 and Germany in 2024, which most likely would have had to shut borders to many visiting fans. ap/pti

UEFA EURO 2020 match schedule

Pool stage

June 12

Turkey vs Italy 00:30am*

Wales vs Switzerland 6:30pm

Denmark vs Finland 9:30pm

June 13

Belgium vs Russia 00:30am

England vs Croatia 6:30pm

Austria vs N Macedonia 9:30pm

June 14

Netherlands vs Ukraine 00:30am

Scotland vs Czech Rep. 6:30pm

Poland vs Slovakia 9:30pm

June 15

Spain vs Sweden 00:30am

Hungary vs Portugal 9:30pm

June 16

France vs Germany 00:30am

Finland vs Russia 6:30pm

Turkey vs Wales 9:30pm

June 17

Italy vs Switzerland 00:30am

Ukraine vs N Macedonia 6:30pm

Denmark vs Belgium 9:30pm

June 18

Netherlands vs Austria 00:30am

Sweden vs Slovakia 6:30pm

Croatia vs Czech Rep. 9:30pm

June 19

England vs Scotland 00:30am

Hungary vs France 6:30pm

Portugal vs Germany 9:30pm

June 20

Spain vs Poland 00:30am

Italy vs Wales 9:30pm

Switzerland vs Turkey 9:30pm

June 21

N Macedonia vs Netherlands 9:30pm

Ukraine vs Austria 9:30pm

June 22

Russia vs Denmark 00:30am

Finland vs Belgium 00:30m

June 23

Czech Rep. vs England 00:30am

Croatia vs Scotland 00:30am

Slovakia vs Spain 9:30pm

Sweden vs Poland 9:30pm

June 24

Germany vs Hungary 00:30am

Portugal v France 00:30am

KNOCKOUT PHASE

Round of 16: June 26-30

Quarterfinals: July 2-4

Semifinals: July 7-8

Final: July 12

Live on Sony Ten | *All times IST

Group A (Rome/Baku): Turkey, Italy (hosts), Wales, Switzerland

Group B (Copenhagen/St Petersburg): Denmark (hosts), Finland, Belgium, Russia (hosts)

Group C (Amsterdam/Bucharest): Netherlands (hosts), Ukraine, Austria, North Macedonia

Group D (London/Glasgow): England (hosts), Croatia, Scotland (hosts), Czech Republic

Group E (Seville/St Petersburg): Spain (hosts), Sweden, Poland, Slovakia

Group F (Munich/Budapest): Hungary (hosts), Portugal (holders), France, Germany (hosts)

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