Euro 2020 Qualifiers, Ukraine 2-1 Portugal: 3 Talking Points
Portugal fell to a 2-1 defeat away to Ukraine at the Stadion NSK Olumpiyskiy in Group B of the Euro 2020 qualification series.
The home side raced into the lead as early as the sixth minute when Roman Yaremchuk converted from close range after Rui Patricio had parried Sergey Krivstok's header into his path and Andriy Yarmolenko made it 2-0 20 minutes later.
The West Ham forward showed guile to evade two Portuguese defenders to head home a cross by Vitali Mykolenko, but Ukraine got reduced to ten men after Taras Stepanek was shown a second yellow for handling in the box midway through the second half.
Cristiano Ronaldo stepped up to convert the ensuing penalty and even though Portugal rallied to find an equalizer with their one-man advantage, the hosts held on for the win.
Here, we shall be highlighting three talking points from the fixture.
#3 Ukraine qualify for Euro 2020
Ukraine have been in impressive form during the qualification stage for Euro 2020 and came into the fixture with Portugal as Group B leaders.
Under the legendary Andriy Shevchenko's management, the former Soviet nation has impressed, winning five of their first six games, with the only setback coming in the first-leg goalless draw with Portugal.
That run saw them score 13 goals and concede just one and they needed just a point against Portugal to ensure their progress to the European championship next summer.
They went two better by getting all three points to send them eight clear of their nearest challengers in the group and with that, they are assured of top spot and concordantly qualification to Euro 2020.
While not entirely fatal, the defeat means that Portugal have their work cut out, as they are just one point ahead of Serbia with two matches to go, although they could also secure qualification for Euro 2020 via the playoff spots allocated to the Nations League Group winner.