Ukraine reaches the semi-finals of Euro 2023 U-21 football, scoring three goals against France

Maksym InshakovSport
The match took place in Cluj, Romania

Ukraine's youth football team defeated France at the 2023 U-21 European Championship and reached the semi-finals. The match of the 1/4 finals in Cluj, Romania, ended with a score of 3-1. This result allowed our compatriots to qualify for the 2024 Olympics in Paris.

From the very first seconds, Ukraine set up in a 4-4-2 formation, with Sudakov and Kashchuk forming a pair of formal centre-forwards. In the first few minutes, Bondarenko's mistake almost cost us a goal, but Trubin saved both shots 20 seconds apart.

Gradually, the advantage of the French team became clearer and clearer. The game moved to the Ukrainian penalty area, forcing Rotan's men to think more about defence. In the first 15 minutes, the Ukrainians had to stop the opponent's breakthrough three times by violating the rules.


The Blue and Yellows played the ball for a long time in their own half of the field, trying to lure the opposition out. In the 18th minute, Le Feu was lost between the lines, he passed to Bradley Barcola, and the speedy Lyon midfielder scored straight into the net.

The French players had the initiative, while our players had great difficulty advancing to Chevalier's goal. The French calmly blocked all the free zones and then controlled the movement of the Ukrainians in the middle block.

Mudryk, who appeared on the pitch for the first time in the tournament, was in the shadows for all 30 minutes, doing virtually nothing, and then earned a penalty. Georgy Sudakov converted the 11-metre spot-kick.

After conceding a goal, the French team began to storm Trubin's goal with even more aggression. In the 38th minute, only luck saved Ukraine from scoring. Barkol's shot hit the bar.

It was this Frenchman who was the main threat in the match. His explosive speed and quick feet created huge problems for the Ukrainian team. It was Barkola who was the main author of the "fires" in our penalty area.



At the end of the first half, Ukraine scored a completely illogical goal, having created almost the only chance in half an hour. Mudryk sent Sudakov out on a date with the goalkeeper from his own area with a brilliant pass, and the 20-year-old Shakhtar midfielder made it 2-1.

The second half began with an assault from France. The Gallic Roosters controlled the situation, and the game was mostly played near our goal. The Yellow and Blues were fully focused on defence.

Ukraine was more and more focused on disrupting other people's attacks than organising their own. The statistics of the second half in the 75th minute looked like this:


In the 81st minute, the French scored a goal, but it was cancelled due to offside.

Being carried away by the attacks, the French team missed our counterattack, which ended with a goal by Artem Bondarenko in the 86th minute.

Ukraine will play against Spain in the 1/2 finals. The match will take place on Wednesday, 5 July. The start is at 22:00.

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