Euro 2008 Today
VIENNA, Austria (AP)—A look at Day 15 of the 2008 European Championship on Saturday:
Russia 3, Netherlands 1, extra time (Russia advances to semifinals)
Russia became the third group runner-up to make the semifinals, beating the Netherlands 3-1 in extra time. Turkey and Germany already are in the final four.
Russia’s aggressive and creative offense was too much for the Dutch to handle, and the Netherlands barely forced overtime, getting Ruud van Nistelrooy’s goal in the 86th minute.
Andrei Arshavin set up the winning goal, then scored the clincher as Russia upset the Netherlands 3-1 in extra time to advance to the semifinals. At the final whistle, Arshavin collapsed to the turf in exhaustion—and elation.
The semifinals have never had four runners-up from group play since the tournament went to the current format in 1996. Russia, Turkey and Germany all have beaten group winners in the quarterfinals. Italy, the Group C second-place team, plays Group D winner Spain on Sunday at Vienna.
Netherlands winger Arjen Robben was out for the quarterfinal match against Russia with a recurrence of a groin injury.
GOAL OF THE DAY
Dmitry Torbinski scored the winner with a brilliant deflection off an equally spectacular play by Andrei Arshavin in extra time of Russia’s 3-1 victory over the Netherlands. Arshavin made a run from inside his end of the field down left wing and just before reaching the end line, he sent a left-footed cross that floated over goalkeeper Edwin van der Sar. Torbinski, a reserve midfielder, got the outside of his left boot on the ball as he was moving toward the right post, and the ball settled into the net.
The quarterfinals conclude Sunday night with a classic matchup: Spain, winner of Group D, against World Cup champion Italy, runner-up in Group C. The game will take place in Vienna.
“It’s unbelievable what they did tactically. To outplay tactically and physically the Dutch team is almost a miracle. I challenged the guys. Physically, tactically and technically we were better than the Dutch.”—Russia coach Guus Hiddink, a Dutchman who has guided the long shot Russians into the semifinals.