Internationals: Zinchenko's Euro dream intact

Oleksandr Zinchenko playing for Ukraine against North Macedonia

Oleksandr Zinchenko provided an assist to help Ukraine to a 2-0 win against North Macedonia in Prague and keep their hopes of reaching Euro 2024 alive.

Skippering his country as usual, Alex helped his team open the scoring 30 minutes into the contest when he linked up with Heorhiy Sudakov to fire home from outside the box, and played 76 minutes before being replaced, meaning he watched on as Oleksandr Karavev added a spectacular long-range second in stoppage-time to seal the win.

The three points move Ukraine level on points with Italy who occupy the second qualifying spot, and the Azzurri face first-placed England on Tuesday.

One nation whose spot in the finals is hanging by a thread is Norway, who lost 1-0 at home to Spain with Barcelona’s Gavi netting the game’s only goal. Martin Odegaard skippered his team for the full game while David Raya remained on the bench for the visitors, and the result sees Scotland and Spain qualify automatically from the group with two games still to play.

Martin Odegaard playing for Norway against Spain

Martin’s hopes of reaching Germany next summer lie in the form of earning a play-off spot via their Nations League performances, however as it currently stands they are currently not ranked high enough to claim one of the four places available to League B teams.

Jakub Kiwior’s Poland saw their hopes of reaching the finals via the group stage dented as they drew 1-1 at home to Moldova, and had to come from behind to earn that point. Jakub played all 90 minutes in Warsaw, but the result leaves his team third in the group, behind Albania and the Czech Republic who both have a game in hand.

Away from European qualifying, Kai Havertz came on as a 62nd-minute replacement as Germany beat the USA 3-1 to win his 40th cap for his country, while also in the States Thomas Partey captained Ghana in the first half of their meeting with Mexico, but two goals for the North American nation after his withdrawal saw them claim the win.

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