VIENNA, Austria (AP)â€”A look at Day 7 of the 2008 European Championship on Friday:
Netherlands 4, France 1, Group C (Netherlands advances)
Romania 1, Italy 1, Group C
Goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon saved a penalty kick by Adrian Mutu in the 81st minute against Romania, preserving a 1-1 draw. Buffon, a key performer for Italyâ€™s World Cup champions two years ago, dived left and reached back with his hand to stop Mutuâ€™s shot, and the ball then deflected away off the goalkeeperâ€™s leg.
Italyâ€™s Gianluigi Buffon stopped a penalty kick and made several other key saves, preserving a 1-1 draw with Romania that kept the Italians alive in Group C.
Substitutes Robin Van Persie and Arjen Robben sparked the Netherlandsâ€™ 4-1 romp past France, each scoring a goal in the second half as the Dutch clinched Group C.
Romania midfielder Mirel Radoi was carried off on a stretcher after a mid-air collision in the 20th minute of his teamâ€™s 1-1 draw against Italy. Radoi broke his nose when he collided with teammate Razvan Rat while both were going for a header. Medical staff put a bandage over Radoiâ€™s eyes, and he could be seen shielding his nose with his hand as he was taken off the field. Coach Victor Piturca said the injury was â€œfairly serious,â€ adding that Radoi likely needs an operation on his eye.
Germany forward Lukas Podolski missed practice Friday because of a left ankle injury. Germany coach Joachim Loew said he hoped Podolski, who has scored all three of the teamâ€™s goals in the tournament, would be ready for Mondayâ€™s final Group B match against Austria. Marcell Jansen pulled a shoulder muscle and Philipp Lahm has a bruised calf. Heiko Westermann wore a cast on his right hand after getting hit by a ball in practice and spraining tendons. All three of them are defenders.
The 4-1 rout at the hands of the Netherlands was Franceâ€™s worst at Euros since losing 5-1 to Yugoslavia in the 1968 tournament.
GOAL OF THE DAY
The Netherlandsâ€™ Ruud van Nistelrooy spun some magic with close footwork to send Arjen Robben down the left on a counterattack. The winger outran the opposition, bided his time and saw Robin Van Persie make a run on the right. Van Persie pushed Robbenâ€™s pass past Gregory Coupet for the second and winning goal.
The second series of games in the opening round concludes with Spain playing Sweden at Innsbruck, Austria, followed by defending champion Greece against Russia at Salzburg. The Spaniards and Swedes each won their first matches.
â€œAfter the Holland game, all of us had to shoulder the responsibility. â€œWe were sorry to hurt so many Italian fans with the way we played. And weâ€™re sorry somewhat tonight, because we didnâ€™t get the three points I think we deserved.â€ â€” Italy coach Roberto Donadoni.
â€œItaly was already so beautiful and this is exactly the same. Super, Italy and France are nothing to laugh at.â€â€”The Netherlandsâ€™ Wesley Sneijder, who scored his second goal of the tournament in the 4-1 win over France.