UEFA Euro 2024: 5 fastest goals in European Championship history as Albania star Nedim Bajrami sets new record

Nedim Bajrami makes history in EURO 2024.
Nedim Bajrami makes history in EURO 2024.

Nedim Bajrami has set a new record in the European Championship, scoring a goal within 23 seconds in Albania's EURO 2024 opening game against Italy on Saturday, June 15. The Albanians eventually lost the game 2-1, as the Italians showed themselves to be the more clinical side.

Bajrami was easily the fastest thinking player on the pitch in the moment, as he pounced upon a poor throw. Alessandro Bastoni failed to reach the thrown ball, opting instead to hold his position. This left Bajrami with the chance to put the ball onto his right foot before firing a powerful shot into the near post.

After Bajrami's effort went in early, Italy took over the scene, dominating their opponents for the rest of their EURO 2024 opener. Ten minutes later, an unmarked Bastoni made up for his poor start to the game, driving a bullet header into the goal after receiving a cross from Luca Pellegrini.

Within another five minutes, it was Nicolo Barella who provided a one-time shot from the edge of the area, stunning goalkeeper Thomas Strakosha who stood unmoved. While the Italians were unable to score another, it proved an impossible task for the Albanians to find the equalizer.

While they will rue losing their very early lead and ending the game with no points, Nedim Bajrami has made history in EURO 2024 with his 23-second goal. Let's take a look at the five fastest goals in the competition's history.

#5 Robert Lewandowski vs Portugal - EURO 2016

It took only 100 seconds - under two minutes, for Robert Lewandowski to open the scoring for Poland in their quarter-final match against Portugal in 2016. The current Barcelona striker has made a name for himself as one of the best sharpshooters in the world, and it took him no time at all to score on that day. However, Portugal eventually won the match 5-3 on penalties.

#4 Yussuf Poulsen vs Belgium - EURO 2020

While it took Lewandowski 100 seconds to score his effort, Denmark striker Yussuf Poulsen bettered the Polish marksman by only one second. The Danes started strong with Poulsen's effort that beat Thibaut Courtois, but it was Belgium who laughed last, ensuring a 2-1 comeback in the group stage match.

#3 Emil Forsberg vs Poland - EURO 2020

Emil Forsberg needed only 82 seconds to open the scoring with a much-needed goal in the group stage for Sweden against Poland. All they had to do was secure a win in the match to ensure that they would end the group stage at the top of their group. Poulsen's early goal notably helped them to a 3-2 win.

#2 Dmitri Kirichenko vs Greece - EURO 2004

It took only 67 seconds for Dmitri Kirichenko to open the scoring in Russia's 2-1 win over Greece in EURO 2004. It would all be for nothing though, as the win did not help them get through to the knockout stages. They had already lost their first two games and were out of the competition, but Kirichenko made history and would hold the record for the fastest goal for 20 years. That is, until EURO 2024.

#1 Nedim Bajrami vs Italy - EURO 2024

While Kirichenko's long-standing record was a 67-second goal, Nedim Bajrami crossed below the one-minute mark in Albania's 2-1 loss to Italy. Only 23 seconds was needed as he roofed his effort beyond goalkeeper Gianluigi Donnarumma. However, just like in two of the matches on this list, scoring an early goal did not ensure the win for Albania in their EURO 2024 opening match.

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Edited by Nihal
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