A lone goal scored by Lucas Nemica prevented Portugal from reversing Malabata at the UEFA European Under-21 Championship, adding their third defeat in another final, to Germany, 1-0, penalizing an below-average performance.
In front of 4,883 spectators at Stozice Stadium, in Ljubljana, the German striker won in the 49th minute, aided by a cutting pass from Ridle Baku down the right lane, to claim the third title of ‘mannschaft’ (2009, 2017 and 2021) in five finals.
Portugal broke a record 12 wins and missed a historic opportunity to complete an unprecedented number of continental victories for national teams at U-17, U-19 and U-21 levels, repeating the 1994 defeats (0-1 against Italy.), with the ‘Golden Goal’. ) and 2015 (3-4 with Sweden on penalties, after 0-0 in 120 minutes).
In the third match in seven days, Rui Jorge made two changes in the face of the victory over Spain (1-0), in the semi-final, with midfielder Florentino replacing Judson in the far corner of the diamond, while Thiago Thomas replaced Rafael. Liao up front.
Portugal regained the active entry observed throughout the competition and left Finn Dahmen in the right direction in the second minute, with a shot from Diogo Dalot into the side net, and in the eighth minute, with Thiago Thomas corresponding to a series of rebounds won by Dani. Motta on the left runs into the area to shoot centimeters from the German goal.
Stefan Koontz’s pupils, who had nothing new in the face of the “eleven” that wiped out the Netherlands (2-1), resisted the Portuguese dynamism with physical proportions and grew under pressure in the developed regions, where Florentino made it easy in the quarter. An hour, he lost the ball on the edge of the penalty area to Florian Wirts, who hit Diogo Costa’s post in a collision after a veer by Diogo Lite.
By shortening the creative space in the middle lane, Germany limited the creative units in the “corners” and took charge, but faced an indomitable Portuguese guardian in the 20th minute, when he took the place to deny Lucas Nemica’s intentions, and in the 29th, flying to block a deliberate kick from Arne Meyer to the corner.
Portugal relegated to a negative block and revived the difficulties of recent matches to control the space between midfielders and defenders and Riddell Baku and Wirtz incursions down the right, although they missed a sovereign opportunity near the break.
Shortly after a high “shot” by Fabio Vieira, Dani Motta fired into the rear Vitor Ferreira, who looked isolated in front of goalkeeper Finn Dahmen, but lost in the simulation, was no longer able to shoot and missed the pass to Thiago Thomas.
Rui Jorge replaced Dani Motta with Rafael Liao in the second half, without modifying the cover in the right flank, where Baku appeared in the 49th minute, faced Abdo Conte and found Lucas Nemesha in the category, who dribbled Diogo Costa and hit the ball. Number.
Without losing their composure, the “Alcuinas” team accelerated operations and created danger in the 53rd and 66th minutes, as Niko Schlutterbeek was blocked by two shots by Fabio Vieira, who tried to “cap” the midfield, in the 59th minute, and was tightly closed by the Finn. Dhamin.
Betting on Francisco Conceicao and Jota’s time-to-match prowess reinforced the tactical difference to the traditional 4-3-3 method, a strategy that has rarely improved upon the Portuguese fair, and which has been based on the detriment of Diogo Costa’s inspirational performance. .
The Portuguese goalkeeper, at the insistence of Karim Adeyemi, with his foot, in the 72nd minute, stopped a long shot from Lucas Nemesha with his right hand, in the 75th minute, and new raids by Adeyemi with the legs, in the 80th minute, in insufficient actions to injure colleagues.
The advance on the clock robbed the distinction of Rui Jorge’s pupils, who only waited for the last stage to consolidate the attack with Goncalo Ramos, and increased the focus of Stefan Koontz’s team, which was always more intense in each split.
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