EC QUALIFICATIONS. Croatia grabs the last direct ticket at the expense of Wales, Calvin Stengs (ex-Antwerp) scores a hat-trick


Modric and co will also be there in Germany next year. On the final day of the European Championship qualifications, Croatia and Wales competed for the last direct European Championship ticket. Croatia did what it had to do and won against Armenia. Football was also played in groups B and I, with the latter group still fighting for a group win. An overview.

Group D: Croatia takes the last direct ticket at the expense of Wales

Wales shot themselves in the foot last week by drawing against Armenia, leaving Croatia two points ahead. As a result, the Welsh no longer had it in their own hands: they had to win against Turkey and hope that Croatia would not win against Armenia.

But things weren’t looking good for Wales at half-time. Thanks to a goal from Neco Williams, they were 1-0 ahead, but that was also the halftime score in Croatia. When Turkey made it 1-1 twenty minutes before the end after a penalty, Wales had to start hoping for a miracle. That did not happen, because Croatia held on to its narrow lead against Armenia and thus qualified for the European Championship. Although a draw would have been enough for the Croats, as Wales was stuck at a draw against Turkey. The Turks thus crown themselves group winners.


Group B: The Netherlands easily wins against Gibraltar thanks to a hat-trick from Calvin Stengs

As expected, the Netherlands did not have much difficulty with Gibraltar. After just ten minutes, Calvin Stengs took the lead with his first goal for the Dutch national team. Less than fifteen minutes later, Mats Wieffer put the 0-2 on the scoreboard. It was also Wieffer’s first goal for the orange team. Thanks to a goal from Teun Koopmeiners, the halftime score was 0-3. The Netherlands continued its momentum in the second half, resulting in a 0-6 final score. Stengs completed his hat trick in the second half, and Cody Gakpo also scored. In the other match in Group B, France lost maximum points. Les Bleus did not progress to a 2-2 against Greece.

Calvin Stengs made his first for the Dutch… — © AP

…just like Mats Wieffer — © AFP

Group I: Romania takes group win in direct match against Switzerland.

In group I there were three more matches on the programme, only for Romania and Switzerland. They competed in a direct duel for the group win. Romania capped a strong qualifying campaign by beating the Swiss 1-0 and clinching the group win. Israel also defeated Andorra in that group and Belarus took the three points against Kosovo.

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