Euro 2020: Ukraine vs North Macedonia Match Recap

Ukraine's Andriy Yarmolenko gives his side the lead against North Macedonia in their Euro 2020 clash
Ukraine's Andriy Yarmolenko gives his side the lead against North Macedonia in their Euro 2020 clash
Ivan Derrick

After coming up short against the Netherlands in their Euro 2020 opener, Ukraine secured their first points of the tournament with a 2-1 victory over North Macedonia.

The first chance of the game fell to Ukraine's Ruslan Malinovsky, whose shot from the edge of the box was well saved at the near post by Stole Dimitrievski.

Minutes later, Ukraine came close again when Roman Yaremchuk raced through before looking to square the ball to Malinovsky. However, superb defending from Stefan Ristovski denied Ukraine.

Atalanta's Malinovsky continued to cause problems for North Macedonia and a delightful pass to Andriy Yarmolenko yielded another good save from Dimitrievski.

However, Ukraine got their breakthrough from the resulting corner. Oleksandr Karavaev produced a delightful back-heel flick which was eventually stabbed in at the far post by Yarmolenko for the first goal of the game.

Minutes later, the lead was doubled when Yarmolenko played Yaremchuk in behind the defense. The Gent forward slotted home in impressive fashion at the near post to give Ukraine a real stranglehold on proceedings.

North Macedonia did show signs of life as the first half came to an end. They nearly got back into the game in the 39th minute but a lovely run and chipped finish from captain Goran Pandev was ruled out for offside.

Penalty miss does not come back to haunt Ukraine at Euro 2020

Ukraine v North Macedonia - UEFA Euro 2020: Group C
Ukraine v North Macedonia - UEFA Euro 2020: Group C

The second half saw North Macedonia come close again when Arijan Ademi was denied by a good low save by Ukraine's Georgi Bushchan. The Macedonians continued to pour forward and after a delightful curling effort from substitute Aleksandar Trajkovski was tipped onto the crossbar, Pandev was brought down in the box resulting in a penalty.

Leeds United's Ezgjan Alioski stepped up and after his initial effort was saved, he fired home the rebound to halve his side's deficit.

Ukraine won a penalty of their own late in the game after VAR ruled that Malinovsky's free kick had struck an arm in the Macedonian wall. Malinovsky stepped up to take the spot-kick but was denied by Dimitrievski in what was the last noteworthy moment of the game.

North Macedonia, who are bottom of Group C, take on the Netherlands in their next Euro 2020 game, while third-placed Ukraine face Austria.

Also Read: Jim Beglin's column - 5 players who could impress in unfamiliar positions at Euro 2020

Edited by Arvind Sriram
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