A review of Wednesday’s Euro 2020 action, where Wales earned an important win over Turkey, Italy cruised past Switzerland and Russia beat Finland.
Italy 3-0 Switzerland
Manuel Locatelli fired Italy into the knockout phase at Euro 2020 after a 3-0 win over Switzerland.
The Sassuolo midfielder grabbed a classy brace before Ciro Immobile wrapped up a comfortable victory as Italy became the first team to book a spot in the last 16.
Skipper Giorgio Chiellini had an early goal disallowed by VAR before going off injured in the only blow during a comfortable night at the Stadio Olimpico, Italy’s 10th straight win without conceding.
Wales’ 2-0 victory over Turkey put pressure on the Italians but they breezed past the Swiss after an imperious performance in Rome to return to the top of Group A.
Turkey 0-2 Wales
Wales took a huge step towards the knockout stage of Euro 2020 by beating Turkey 2-0 in Baku.
Aaron Ramsey struck close to half-time – his 17th international goal – and Connor Roberts sewed up victory in the final seconds after Gareth Bale had missed a penalty.
The win takes Wales onto four points and leaves them in a healthy position heading into their final Group A fixture against Italy in Rome on Sunday.
Wales were almost ahead inside six minutes when Bale and Ramsey combined in what was to become a running theme of the first half.
Ramsey cut inside Caglar Soyuncu but his near-post shot was saved by the outstretched foot of goalkeeper Ugurcan Cakir.
Burak Yilmaz saw an effort deflected wide, but it was Wales who were constantly probing and loud appeals for a penalty when the ball struck Soyuncu’s elbow were waved away by Portuguese referee Artur Dias.
Ramsey fired over midway through the half from Bale’s defence-splitting pass, but Turkey did not heed the warning and were punished three minutes before the break.
Bale dropped deep again to find Ramsey and the Juventus man timed his run to perfection to beat Cakir with comfort.
Turkey upped the tempo after the break and Hakan Calhanoglu forced a first save from Danny Ward before Yilmaz volleyed over from inside the six-yard box.
Ramsey was denied doubling Wales’ lead by Cakir’s good glovework before a golden opportunity presented itself on the hour mark. Bale was tripped by Zeki Celik just inside the area but the Real Madrid forward sent his spot-kick high over the crossbar.
Turkey pressed furiously in the closing stages and Ward denied Merih Demiral with a superb close-range save.
Bale made up for his penalty miss in stoppage time, cutting the ball back for Roberts to sweep home and surely send Wales into the last 16.
Finland 0-1 Russia
Aleksei Miranchuk scored the only goal as Russia kick-started their Euro 2020 challenge in St Petersburg with a 1-0 win against Finland.
Atalanta forward Miranchuk’s decisive strike came in first-half stoppage time and victory followed Saturday’s opening 3-0 Group B defeat to Belgium.
Finland had upset Denmark 1-0 in their opening game, in a match overshadowed by Christian Eriksen’s collapse, but, although they improved in the second half against Russia, they failed to seriously trouble Stanislav Cherchesov’s side.
Russia will be relieved to be up and running – they also extended their unbeaten record against the Finns to 18 matches – but they were far from convincing in a game which was low on quality.