England knock out Ukraine to win Group D, France lose but still advance | Sports| German football and major international sports news | DW | 19.06.2012
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England knock out Ukraine to win Group D, France lose but still advance

England were pressed hard in their final Group D match against Ukraine but did enough to win 1-0 and eliminate the co-hosts. France lost to Sweden 2-0 but advanced nonetheless.

Wayne Rooney's lone goal in the 48th minute was enough to push England past Ukraine on Tuesday evening, as well as book a place in the quarter finals for Coach Roy Hodgson's side.

Ukraine enjoyed the lion's share of possession and the strong support of a capacity crowd in Donetsk, but suffered from poor finishing and couldn't manage a goal.

Controversy struck in the 62nd minute as an apparent goal by Marko Devic was not given by the referee's assistant, who was behind the play and did not see the ball go over the line before John Terry could clear.

England's John Terry clears a ball that went over the line

John Terry was a little late getting to Devic's shot, but lucky for him the linesman was even later

"That was a goal. We had a goal stolen from us,” Ukraine coach Oleg Blokhin said after the match. “This sort of thing seems to happen when you play the big teams."

England have their own fresh memories of a goal that wasn't given - one from Frank Lampard in their eventual 4-1 loss to Germany in the 2010 World Cup - and Tuesday's incident is likely to give the goal-line technology debate a new lease on life.

France lose and move on

In the other match on the night, volleyed goals from Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Sebastian Larsson gave Sweden a 2-0 win over France in Kyiv.

Les Bleus had more possession (57%) and more shots on frame than the Swedes (10 to 7) but couldn't convert.

Sweden's Zlatan Ibrahimovic (C) celebrates with team mates after scoring a goal against France during their Group D Euro 2012 soccer match at the Olympic Stadium in Kiev, June 19, 2012. REUTERS/Michael Dalder (UKRAINE - Tags: SPORT SOCCER)

Ibra's goal gave Sweden a lift

"We couldn't find a way in tonight," said France keeper Hugo Lloris. "Sweden are a big, physical team and they had their way with us."

The result didn't end up hurting France, however. They go through to the quarter finals as runners up and will face Group C winners Spain on Saturday. England face Group C runners up Italy on Monday.

With all 24 group stage matches now finished, the tournament will take a day off on Wednesday after 12 straight days of action.

Author: Matt Hermann
Editor: Spencer Kimball

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