Impressive Austria beat Ukraine to set up Euro 2020 last-16 tie with Italy

·18-min read
Austria's midfielder Christoph Baumgartner scores the only goal of the game - AFP via Getty
Austria's midfielder Christoph Baumgartner scores the only goal of the game - AFP via Getty

A chaotic 15-minute span for Christoph Baumgartner gave Austria the win they wanted and the advancement they craved.

The midfielder was involved in a clash of heads early in the first half, then scored the only goal in Austria's 1-0 victory over Ukraine at the European Championship on Monday.

Baumgartner jumped to clear a corner in the 17th minute but was knocked to the ground after colliding head-to-head with Illia Zabarnyi. He was given medical attention and was cleared to continue playing.

Four minutes later, he knocked in a corner from Austria captain David Alaba on the other end to give his team a lead they were to keep to the final whistle.

Baumgartner didn't make it that far, however. He was replaced in the 32nd minute, walking off the field while holding his head.

"He's OK," Austria coach Franco Foda said. "He had some problems before he scored the goal but luckily, he stayed on the pitch, scored the goal. After that, he felt dizzy and we just decided to take him off the pitch. He scored the goal so I'm very happy with him."

Baumgartner was in pain but delighted.

"I can't quite comprehend it all, my head is really hurting. This is really special for all of us. Dear Austria, enjoy it," he told the Austrian ORF broadcaster. "We've already written the history, but it's not over yet."

Ukraine vs Austria, Euro 2020 live: score, team news and latest updates - EPA/EFE
Ukraine vs Austria, Euro 2020 live: score, team news and latest updates - EPA/EFE

Austria came into Euro 2020 with zero wins, two draws, and only one goal scored from regular play in six games played in the 2008 and 2016 editions of the European Championship.

A 3-1 victory over North Macedonia in the opening group match was the team's first victory at a major tournament in 31 years. Despite a 2-0 loss to the Netherlands, the Austrians finished in second place in Group C behind the Dutch and will next play against Italy in London on Saturday.

"They are on an unbeaten run but it will end one day," Foda said about Italy. "If we can show the same performance we showed tonight and even improve, then I think we're able to compete with Italy."

Ukraine is in third place in the group with three points and could still qualify for the round of 16 as one of the four best third-place teams. It will have to wait for confirmation when the other groups are finished.

"It was a bad game for us," Ukraine coach Andriy Shevchenko said. "We had tries in the second half, we were fighting till the end but this is not the level of football we want to show."

Alaba played in the middle of a back three in the previous games, but he was at left back in a four-man defensive line on Monday, supporting the attack with well executed crosses and corner kicks from both sides.

Marko Arnautovic was all smiles despite not making it onto the scoresheet - REUTERS
Marko Arnautovic was all smiles despite not making it onto the scoresheet - REUTERS

Austria had more chances to score, particular from striker Marko Arnautovic, but he missed the target when he had only Ukraine goalkeeper Georgiy Bushchan to beat late in the first half.

Ukraine tried to attack in the second half and Austria goalkeeper Daniel Bachmann saved a goal-bound header from teammate Stefan Lainer, who was under pressure following substitute Viktor Tsygankov's cross in the second half.

Ukraine striker Roman Yaremchuk, who scored a goal in each of his team's first two matches at the tournament, fired narrowly wide with an angled shot toward the end.

05:53 PM

Full time: Ukraine 0 Austria 1

That's it! Well done Austria, that's an excellent win and they thoroughly deserved it. Their prize is a match against Italy, tough - but the Italians will not be taking these guys lightly by any means. A solid outfit.

They finish second, the Netherlands top the group in style.

05:51 PM

90 mins: Ukraine 0 Austria 1

Yarmolenko with a bit of composure, nice reverse pass to Zinchenko... but there's an offside flag.

05:49 PM

90 mins: Ukraine 0 Austria 1

Obviously there is still time - three minutes added time in fact - but Austria have not really been under much pressure.

05:46 PM

86 mins: Ukraine 0 Austria 1

Not a moment too soon, Ukraine look like they're gonna bang a few into the box... but here's a nice square pass to Yaremchuk, and he has a go from a tight angle.

05:44 PM

84 mins: Ukraine 0 Austria 1

Some glum faces in the crowd for Ukraine. If it stays like this, they're coming third with three points and a GD of minus one, and I don't think that will be enough, will it?

05:42 PM

82 mins: Ukraine 0 Austria 1

Artem Besedin, a big strapping guy, coming on up front for Ukraine. No prizes for guessing the tactics in the last few minutes.

05:41 PM

80 mins: Ukraine 0 Austria 1

It has been all Austria really but there is still hope for the Ukrainian guys.

05:37 PM

77 mins: Ukraine 0 Austria 1

Zinchenko has caught Grillitsch. No card. This ref is happy to let the game flow, as we are seeing at this tournament.

05:35 PM

76 mins: Ukraine 0 Austria 1

Dangerous corner but nobody can get on it. Oh, Lainer is coming off. Wearied rather than badly hurt.

05:35 PM

75 mins: Ukraine 0 Austria 1

Here they come again. Sabitzer this time down the left, shoots and it is deflected behind for a corner.

05:31 PM

71 mins: Ukraine 0 Austria 1

I reckon Austria will give some of the bigger teams a pretty good game, on this evidence. They've got three in midfield who work hard and carry the ball effectively in the turnover. Lainer as mentioned, Schlager and their mate Grillitsch. Alaba is the man with the class of course, overlapping down the left. If they can isolate a full back/overload a fullback as they have been able to do tonight with the Ukraine lad Karavaev, they can really cause problems.

Arnautović is probably a click short of true class up front, that's the weakness.

05:30 PM

70 mins: Ukraine 0 Austria 1

Lainer driving his team on, he's having a good game. But, sorry pal, no sooner have I typed that, than he's down getting his knee looked at.

05:29 PM

69 mins: Ukraine 0 Austria 1

Harry centres in on the big issue.

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05:24 PM

65 mins: Ukraine 0 Austria 1

Wijnaldum's got another, by the way. Poor old North Macedonia are getting a paddlin'.

05:23 PM

63 mins: Ukraine 0 Austria 1

That's 17 attempts the Austrians have had now. They're gonna get mugged here I reckon.

05:22 PM

62 mins: Ukraine 0 Austria 1

Because at one nil you just never know. A freekick from the left for Ukraine causes more problems that it maybe should have done and Lainer dips to head it ... so nearly past his own keeper! The Austrian keeper had to look lively there. Nearly a gorgeous own goal.

05:20 PM

60 mins: Ukraine 0 Austria 1

Austria really want to put this to bed. They've had a three on two here but made a complete apple strudel of it. Lainer had two options to pass it to but gave it to nobody.

05:16 PM

57 mins: Ukraine 0 Austria 1

Austria with a counter, their three-man midfield is working well. Schlager tries an effort from outside the area.

05:15 PM

55 mins: Ukraine 0 Austria 1

Better from Ukraine. Yarmolenko gets down the right and uses his right to cross. Cleared.

Wijnaldum's made it two for the Netherlands.

05:13 PM

52 mins: Ukraine 0 Austria 1

Yarmolenko has a half, at best, chance from a cross.

05:12 PM

50 mins: Ukraine 0 Austria 1

If Ukraine have made radical tactical changes, I cannot really see their effects yet myself.

05:08 PM

46 mins: Ukraine 0 Austria 1

Early moment of action for the ref because there is a collision in the Austria box. Yaremchuk has grappled with Hinteregger and thrown him to the ground. Ref keeps the cards pocketed.

04:53 PM

Half time: Ukraine 0 Austria 1

Well the best you can say for Ukraine is that could be three down and out of this, but it is still only one. Austria have been excellent, they've got the tactics and the formation right and they're all over Ukraine who are a) off the pace and b) not in the right shape. Andriy Shevchenko has a job of work on his hands.

ukraine vs austria live euro 2020 score team news updates - REUTERS/Mihai Barbu 
ukraine vs austria live euro 2020 score team news updates - REUTERS/Mihai Barbu

04:49 PM

45+ mins: Ukraine 0 Austria 1

Poor defensive judgement from Matviyenko as he lets the ball drop and Austria can nip in. Sabitzer looks like he is through but loses his footing at the key moment. Arnautović's effort is weak. But Ukraine cannot clear, Austria come again - and now it's Laimer who has time and space... but he slices wide.

04:48 PM

45 mins: Ukraine 0 Austria 1

Yaremchuk hasn't had a lot of service, but on a rare occasion he does get a moment in the opposition box, his touch is a la cement mixer and the chance is spoiled.

04:46 PM

44 mins: Ukraine 0 Austria 1

Sydorchuk and Arnautovic up for a header, it's the Austrian who comes off the worst

04:45 PM

42 mins: Ukraine 0 Austria 1

Ooh it should be two. The ball comes in from the right, Arnautovic is unmarked in the centre but has screwed his shot wide with only the keeper to beat.

04:41 PM

38 mins: Ukraine 0 Austria 1

That led to a corner, but not one of note.

04:40 PM

37 mins: Ukraine 0 Austria 1

Good from Emma Hayes. "In that channel, that's the problem for Ukraine. Alaba comes on the outside and that means Yarmolenko has to come and defend, and he doesn't want to do that."

Thus Laimer is allowed to pick it up in the inside left channel, and with Alaba overlapping, Karavaev is outnumbered. He doesn't know whether to go with Alaba or tuck in. Laimer hits a good shot and it is tipped away, rather eccentrically. Goalie has 'got a mistake in him' I would say...

04:36 PM

35 mins: Ukraine 0 Austria 1

Austrians have yet another corner, fine work from Alaba to keep it alive and dink it over. Cleared. But the ball soon comes back in, and that man Alaba is there again - rising like a multi-skilled salmon to nod it back across.

04:35 PM

32 mins: Ukraine 0 Austria 1

Ukraine getting more into this. The goalscorer Baumgartner, who had that clash of heads, is substituted for Schöpf.

04:34 PM

30 mins: Ukraine 0 Austria 1

The Dutchies are doing the business against North Macedonia by the way. It's Memphis Depay who scores.

04:31 PM

28 mins: Ukraine 0 Austria 1

Ukraine's best moment comes as Mykola Shaparenko drives in from the left and hits one, the Austria keeper Bachmann turns it away (no overdrive on this occasion) but he is very close to palming it straight into the path of Yarmolenko. It just evades the Ukraine star man!

04:29 PM

26 mins: Ukraine 0 Austria 1

Hinteregger the next Austrian to go close from a corner. Excellent tempo for this game.

04:25 PM

22 mins: Ukraine 0 Austria 1

Alaba and Yarmolenko are probably each side's best player and the Austrian coach has put his star man up against the Ukraine star. Alaba is having the better of things so far and is a constant threat down that left.

04:21 PM

GOAL! Ukraine 0 Austria 1 (Baumgartner 20)

But it is Austria who have the lead, and they deserve it. They've got their fifth corner here, and Alaba delivers an excellent outswinger from the dead ball. Baumgartner meets it with a beefy header and that's the opener.

04:20 PM

17 mins: Ukraine 0 Austria 0

Cannot fault either team for effort. Can't fault the Ukraine fans in the crowd either, they are making a good racket.

Christoph Baumgartner and Illia Zabarnyi have a clash of heads.

04:19 PM

14 mins: Ukraine 0 Austria 0

Mykola Shaparenko into the books for clattering Christoph Baumgartner in midfield.

04:19 PM

12 mins: Ukraine 0 Austria 0

Oleksandr Karavaev with a good gallop down the right.

04:10 PM

10 mins: Ukraine 0 Austria 0

In fairness, this has been an open, end to end game so far with both sides looking to get about it. Austria are having a go and have won another corner.

04:07 PM

5 mins: Ukraine 0 Austria 0

I speculated in the build up that a draw would "suit" both of these sides. Austria of course were one of the two teams in the notorious Disgrace of Gijón at the 1982 World Cup. A 1-0 defeat by West Germany was good enough for both they and Austria to progress, Algeria the unlucky collateral damage.

In German, the Nichtangriffspakt von Gijón (lit. "Non-aggression pact of Gijón"

04:04 PM

3 mins: Ukraine 0 Austria 0

Ukraine defend a couple of corners pretty solidly.

04:04 PM

2 mins: Ukraine 0 Austria 0

Hayes picks out Malinovsky, "a midfielder with bags of talent who will link up with the front line."

But it is Austria who make the early running.

Xaver Schlager with a nice direct burst down the right, cuts it inside for Laimer, who would have had a glorious chance if his touch hadn't let him down.

04:01 PM

1 mins: Ukraine 0 Austria 0

Ukraine are in all yellow, the Austrians are in red shirts and white shorts.

Ukraine: Bushchan, Karavayev, Zabarnyi, Matviyenko, Mykolenko, Shaparenko, Sydorchuk, Zinchenko, Yarmolenko, Yaremchuk, Malinovsky. Subs: Sobol, Sudakov, Kryvtsov, Stepanenko, Marlos, Pyatov, Makarenko, Tsygankov, Besyedin, Trubin, Tymchyk, Dovbyk.

Austria: Bachmann, Lainer, Dragovic, Hinteregger, Alaba, Laimer, Xaver Schlager, Grillitsch, Baumgartner, Sabitzer, Arnautovic. Subs: Alexander Schlager, Ulmer, Posch, Ilsanker, Gregoritsch, Pervan, Lienhart, Trimmel, Schaub, Schopf, Onisiwo, Kalajdzic.

Referee: Cuneyt Cakir (Turkey)

04:00 PM

Excellent news

Emma Hayes is doing the analysis / co-comm role. I've already learned several things about Austria's full back reliance.

03:57 PM

Ukraine one is a belter!

Woof. There are a LOT of people in that stadium and almost all of them seem to be pulling for Ukraine.

03:55 PM

Right then!

Anthem time.

Andriy Shevchenko, Head Coach of Ukraine inspects the pitch - Getty
Andriy Shevchenko, Head Coach of Ukraine inspects the pitch - Getty

03:36 PM

Gareth's on ITV

"We know who the better players are but we are always open to players coming in."

03:29 PM

Typically passionate

and punchy argument from Mr Luke Edwards here.

How Uefa ruined the Euros with inflated tournament that lacks jeopardy

03:18 PM

ITV are putting the

same pre-game on both ITV and ITV4. That's interesting. So Nigel De Jong is chatting it up about the Dutch team, along with Eni Aluko and Patrick Vieira and Mark Pougatch.

03:09 PM

One of the many good things

about this tournament is that when there's a game on ITV4, you end up catching a few minutes of Minder before the programme starts.

Ukraine and Austria fans outside the stadium in Bucharest before the match - REUTERS/Marko Djurica 
Ukraine and Austria fans outside the stadium in Bucharest before the match - REUTERS/Marko Djurica

03:05 PM

Team news

Austria coach Franco Foda brings back Marko Arnautovic to lead the attack against Ukraine in their final group game, making two changes to the team that lost 2-0 to the Netherlands.

Arnautovic, the goalscoring hero and villain from their opening 3-1 win over North Macedonia, returns after a one-game ban following his verbal attack on an opponent. He replaces Michael Gregoritsch.

Andreas Ulmer also drops out of the lineup with Florian Grillitsch coming into the team.

Ukraine have made only one change to the side that beat North Macedonia 2-1, with Serhiy Sydorchuk replacing Taras Stepanenko in midfield.

With Netherlands through as group winners, Ukraine will finish second with a win or a draw while Austria must beat Ukraine to finish second or risk waiting to see if they advance as one of four best third-placed teams. Which, like I say, I am pretty sure they will.

02:58 PM

Teams

Ukraine: Bushchan, Karavayev, Zabarnyi, Matviyenko, Mykolenko, Shaparenko, Sydorchuk, Zinchenko, Yarmolenko, Yaremchuk, Malinovsky. Subs: Sobol, Sudakov, Kryvtsov, Stepanenko, Marlos, Pyatov, Makarenko, Tsygankov, Besyedin, Trubin, Tymchyk, Dovbyk.

Austria: Bachmann, Lainer, Dragovic, Hinteregger, Alaba, Laimer, Xaver Schlager, Grillitsch, Baumgartner, Sabitzer, Arnautovic. Subs: Alexander Schlager, Ulmer, Posch, Ilsanker, Gregoritsch, Pervan, Lienhart, Trimmel, Schaub, Schopf, Onisiwo, Kalajdzic.

Referee: Cuneyt Cakir (Turkey)

02:55 PM

The third place tie-breakers are as follows

1) Points

2) Goal difference

3) Goals scored

4) Wins

5) Lower disciplinary points total*

6) European Qualifiers overall ranking

* lower disciplinary points total based only on yellow and red cards received in all group matches (red card = 3 points, yellow card = 1 point, expulsion for two yellow cards in one match = 3 points)

02:51 PM

So who needs what?

As I said below, if it's a draw, both sides will have four points and a GD of 0; Ukraine will finish second because they have scored more goals. Austria would then take their chances against other third place teams. The only team that has definitely finished third so far is Switzerland, who also have four points, but have a goal difference of minus 1. So Austria are ahead of their near-neighbour right out of the gate, and would thus only need to have a better record than one other side.

02:40 PM

Ukraine vs Austria

Good afternoon, and welcome to our live blog of the Group C match between Ukraine and Austria, which is being played in Bucharest. It kicks off at 5pm, we will have the team news about an hour before that I should think, and you can watch the action on ITV4.

Both sides have got three points so far: they both beat North Macedonia, and they both lost to the Netherlands. If there is a winner, that side will obviously definitely go through. They both have a goal difference of zero but Ukraine have got their noses in front by dint of goals scored. If it's a draw, Ukraine go through in second place and Austria will have to take their chances among the four best third-place finishers.

A draw would very likely be enough for Austria so we'll have to see how that... develops.

But skipper David Alaba is not settling. Here's a story about him/them.

Austria's Euro 2020 group game against Ukraine will feel like a final as they bid to reach the knockout stages of a major tournament for the first time in 39 years, captain David Alaba said.

Austria, who have not gone beyond the group stage since the 1982 World Cup, are third in Group C on three points, behind second-placed Ukraine on goal difference.

A draw in their final group game would be enough for Ukraine to finish second behind the Netherlands, who have already qualified, but Austria will advance if they win at Bucharest.

"We are aware that it has a feeling of a final, we want to win this match and write history, this is obvious," Alaba said.

"It won't be easy but we can see that we have great team spirit. There are so many players who play at such a top level and have already gained experience.

"We know how strong Ukraine are, but we also know their weaknesses and we want to benefit from this."

As for their opponents, Andriy Yarmolenko will be the man to watch. He and Roman Yaremchuk scored a goal each for Ukraine in the team's opening match, and then scored a goal each in the second as well.

"The toughest game is ahead of us in the next round of matches," Yarmolenko said.

Despite the goals, Ukraine coach Andriy Shevchenko's concern in the previous match was that his team didn't score more, given the numerous chances his players created.

Ruslan Malinovskyi, for example, had an opportunity to put the game against North Macedonia out of reach with an 84th-minute penalty awarded after a handball. But the Atalanta midfielder ran up casually and placed a rising shot that goalkeeper Stole Dimitrievski saved easily.

"If we would have only drawn, I would be very upset," Malinovskyi said of the 2-1 victory.

Shevchenko said defender Denys Popov has a calf injury and might miss what the coach called "a very, very difficult game ahead of us."

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