Tuesday, July 16, 2024
HomeWorldBelgium 0-1 Slovakia: Romelu Lukaku has TWO goals disallowed by VAR as...

Belgium 0-1 Slovakia: Romelu Lukaku has TWO goals disallowed by VAR as Ivan Schranz’s early strike gives his side the biggest upset victory of Euro 2024

On Sunday, Slovakia boss Francesco Calzona said ‘it’s not about losing’ against Belgium.

His players did just that and went one step further by dealing with one of the biggest shocks in European Championship history.

Separated by 45 places in the FIFA rankings and against the likes of Kevin De Bruyne and Romelu Lukaku, Calzona’s men struck early through Ivan Schranz and then withstood relentless Belgian pressure to place the cat among the pigeons in Group E.

Twice Belgium celebrated the equalizer, but neither stood after VAR checks, while Slovakia secured a victory for the ages that would have been celebrated all the way from Frankfurt to Bratislava.

Led by captain Milan Skriniar, no matter what happens in the rest of the tournament, they will always have this moment. For manager Calzona – who was a coffee dealer in his thirties and played amateur football at the same time – the cheerful full-time scenes were quite something.

Slovakia's players celebrate after Ivan Schanz opened the scoring after just seven minutes

Slovakia’s players celebrate after Ivan Schanz opened the scoring after just seven minutes

Romelu Lukaku thought he had scored the equalizer for Belgium in the second half

Romelu Lukaku thought he had scored the equalizer for Belgium in the second half

Romelu Lukaku thought he had scored the equalizer for Belgium in the second half

However, the striker's goal was disallowed for offside following a VAR review

However, the striker's goal was disallowed for offside following a VAR review

However, the striker’s goal was disallowed for offside following a VAR review

Lukaku was left frustrated as he was denied his first and first Belgian goal of the tournament

Lukaku was left frustrated as he was denied his first and first Belgian goal of the tournament

Lukaku was left frustrated as he was denied his first and first Belgian goal of the tournament

Lukaku appeared to score in the 86th minute after being found by Lois Openda

Lukaku appeared to score in the 86th minute after being found by Lois Openda

Lukaku appeared to score in the 86th minute after being found by Lois Openda

From central Frankfurt to the Waldstadion in the south of the city, the trains were packed with Belgians, with the border to their country just a three-hour drive away.

They came in large numbers for what was supposed to be a procession.

For them, the “Golden Generation” label persists, even if manager Dominico Tedesco, their Italian-German manager, was tired of talking about it.

It was Tedesco who decided to drop Thibaut Courtois after a public row, making this their first match at a major tournament without Courtois in net since 2002.

And while the likes of Eden Hazard and Vincent Kompany have moved on, any side with a combination of De Bruyne and Lukaku, alongside the likes of Leandro Trossard and Jeremy Doku, is to be feared.

Doku started here on the right and from the start it looked like a handful for the Slovakian defense who first set up De Bruyne, whose shot fell to Lukaku, but his strike was stopped by Newcastle’s Martin Dubravka.

A minute later he made another brilliant run that put Lukaku through, but again he begged for the chance as he tried to round the keeper.

But with seven minutes left on the clock it was Doku who was responsible for Slovakia’s opening match, with the Man City winger playing a careless pass into his own penalty area.

Koen Casteels kept out Juraj Kucka’s attack, but Schranz converted on the rebound to give Franceso Calzona’s team a shocking lead. Belgium was stunned.

It was clinical from Sranz, something Tedesco’s side lacked. First Trossard skied over when Dubravka lost possession, before Lukaku missed a sitter on the brink of half-time.

READ ALSO  FA will speak to UEFA about transport chaos after England’s win over Serbia with thousands of fans left waiting into the early hours for trains in abysmal scenes in Gelsenkirchen

Before halftime there was still time for another chance for Slovakia, as Lukas Haraslin’s volley was well kept out by Casteels.

At half-time, Tedesco swapped Doku and Trossard, with the former operating back on his favored left flank.

Lukaku was again denied, this time by a good save from Dubravka, but from the resulting corner, Amadou Onana’s knockdown was tapped in by Lukaku, before VAR ruled the ball out for offside.

Yet Belgium continued wave after wave of attacks as Trossard tested Dubravka before Lukaku hit wide.

Tedesco made a change just before the hour, bringing on Johan Bakayoko for Orel Mangala and somehow Bakayoko was denied by a heroic clearance on the line from David Hancko.

Youri Tielemans came for Trossard but they still didn’t find a solution. Even Kevin De Bruyne – described by compatriot Hazard before the match as the best player in the world – had no answers. On came Lois Openda and Dodi Lukebakio, the former doing a great job on the left and finding Lukaku, who finished brilliantly, but referee Umut Meler ruled that Openda had handled the ball.

It was callous to say the least and will certainly spark further debate.

Not that Slovakia would have cared as they statistically suffered the biggest setback in the history of the European Championship.

Kevin De Bruyne was visibly frustrated as Belgium struggled to find a way back into the match

Kevin De Bruyne was visibly frustrated as Belgium struggled to find a way back into the match

Kevin De Bruyne was visibly frustrated as Belgium struggled to find a way back into the match

CONTEST FACTS

Belgium: Casteels, Castagne, Debast, Faes, Carrasco (Lukebakio 84), Mangala (Bakayoko 57), Onana, Doku (Openda 84), De Bruyne, Trossard (Tielemans 74), Lukaku

READ ALSO  Jerry West dead at 86: Lakers legend whose silhouette remains the NBA’s logo passes away with wife Karen by his side

Subs: Theater, Vertonghen, Witsel, Kaminski, Sels, Vranckx, De Ketelaere, Vermeeren, De Cuyper

Booked: Tielemans

Slovakia: Dubravka, Pekarik, Vavro, Skriniar, Hancko, Kucka, Lobotka, Duda (Obert 90+4), Schranz (Duris 81), Bozenik (Strelec 70), Haraslin (Suslov 70)

Subs: Rigo, Gyomber, Tupta, Benes, Rodak, Hrosovsky, De Marco, Bero, Ravas, Sauer, Kosa

Target: Schranz 7

Booked: Lukebakio

WATCH VIDEO

DOWNLOAD VIDEO

YOU MAY ALSO LIKE
- Advertisment -

RECENT POSTS

- Advertisment -
- Advertisment -