England tops group at Euro 2024 and Slovenia also advances after 0-0 draw

Tue, Jun 25, 2024
Soccer News (AP)

England tops group at Euro 2024 and Slovenia also advances after 0-0 draw

COLOGNE, Germany (AP) - England advanced to the knockout stage of Euro 2024 as group winner after a 0-0 draw against Slovenia on Tuesday.

The result at Cologne Stadium also saw Slovenia reach the round of 16 and Croatia was eliminated.

In a game of few chances, England substitute Cole Palmer could have sealed the win in stoppage time, but his shot was saved by Slovenia goalkeeper Jan Oblak.

England had already been assured of advancing but doing so as Group C winner means it will play one of the qualifying third-placed teams in the round of 16 and is on the opposite side of the draw to Spain, France, Germany and Portugal.

But it was another unconvincing performance from a team that went into the tournament as one of the favorites to be crowned European champion.

Gareth Southgate and his players have faced heavy criticism despite having already advanced before the final group game.

Its performance against Denmark was so uninspired that former captain and now BBC presenter Gary Lineker used an expletive to describe it in a brutal assessment.

Again England looked short of ideas and could have gone behind early on when Benjamin Sesko had a free header from inside the box. His effort lacked power and direction and was easily collected by keeper Jordan Pickford.

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Bukayo Saka had a first-half goal ruled out for offside and Palmer came close late on, but England rarely looked like finding a winner.

England was a beaten finalist at the last Euros when it lost a penalty shootout to Italy and has not won a major tournament since its only triumph - the World Cup in 1966.

This was Slovenia's first appearance at a Euros for 24 years and only the second time it had qualified for the tournament. It advanced to the knockout phase for the first time.

A masked Kylian Mbappe scored his first goal of the Euros, but France drew 1-1 with Poland to finish runner-up in Group D behind Austria, which beat the Netherlands 3-2.

Mbappe wore a protective mask after breaking his nose in France's opening game against Austria and scored from the penalty spot. But Robert Lewandowski's twice-taken spot kick gave already eliminated Poland its first point of the tournament.


James Robson is at https://twitter.com/jamesalanrobson


AP Euro 2024: https://apnews.com/hub/euro-2024

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