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Matchday LIVE: Netherlands face Czech Republic, Belgium take on Portugal

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Goodbye

2021-06-27T21:44:31Z

That's all from tonight's matchday blog as two more sides made it through to the quarter-finals of Euro 2020.

Next up, it's Croatia v Spain and France v Switzerland on Monday.

Until then, farewell!

Thorgan Hazard Belgium Portugal Euro 2020
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Down and out

2021-06-27T21:38:16Z

No record for Ronaldo as Portugal come up short

2021-06-27T21:33:50Z

All thoughts of this being a potentially record-breaking night had gone. For all Ronaldo is labelled as an egotist who puts his own achievements ahead of those of the team, when playing for his country at major tournaments, only winning matters to the 36-year-old star.

Despite some flashes, though, he could not conjure the old magic that led him to become one of the greatest players the world has ever seen. Portugal's defence of their title is over, and so might be Ronaldo's European Championship career.

Read more from Goal's Assistant Features Editor Tom Maston here.
Cristiano Ronaldo Portugal Belgium GFX
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'We are disappointed and sad'

2021-06-27T21:25:59Z

Portugal boss Fernando Santos to TVI24: "We are disappointed and sad. I have some players crying in the dressing room. They gave everything. Belgium had six shots, one hit. We had 29 and hit the post two times. A defeat is a defeat. I honestly don't have many words to say now 

"We all wanted and believed. We had confidence and we were convinced that we could reach the final and win. There is no justice or injustice, we conceded a goal and we couldn't score."

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'We are lucky to win'

2021-06-27T21:16:23Z

Belgium defender Thomas Vermaelen: "In the first half we were playing high and putting pressure on Portugal, but looking at that second half, we are lucky to win.

"Portugal made it really hard for us. We had to really stay focused. It has cost us a lot of energy, but we have some time to recover and now we are looking forward to the game against Italy."

Belgium Portugal Eden Thorgan Hazard Euro 2020
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Belgium through to the last eight

2021-06-27T20:55:30Z

Thorgan Hazard's spectacular first-half strike is the difference.

The first half wasn't much to write home about to be honest, Hazard's goal aside. But it really took off in the second half as two quality sides went toe-to-toe, with chances at either end.

It is Belgium who progress though, they will now head to Munich and a mouth-watering last-eight tie against Italy.

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⏰ Full time

2021-06-27T20:55:03Z

Belgium 1-0 Portugal

The holders are out!

Last chance..

2021-06-27T20:53:47Z

..but wide!

Joao Felix cuts in from the left, plays a one-two with Ronaldo and drags a shot wide.

That could be it for Portugal. Seconds left now.

Poor

2021-06-27T20:51:08Z

We are used to seeing Bruno Fernandes score from distance for Manchester United, but his radar is off here. 

He attempts another shot from 30 yards but it takes off and flies well over the bar.

Time running out for Portugal...

Stoppage time

2021-06-27T20:49:21Z

Five minutes to be added on. ⏰

Chance!

2021-06-27T20:47:19Z

Portugal still pushing - and Belgium are hanging on.

Ronaldo flicks on a cross into the path of André Silva but Thibaut Courtois bravely dives at his feet to claim.

Another injury for Belgium

2021-06-27T20:45:52Z

...this time for Eden Hazard, who pulls up holding his hamstring. He limps off and is replaced by Yannick Carrasco.

If Belgium do make it through, it looks like they will be depleated for their quarter-final.

 

Off the post!

2021-06-27T20:42:32Z

So close for Portugal

A headed Belgium clearance falls perfectly for Raphael Guerreiro, who hits a low first-time half-volley that hits the outside of the post!

Belgium immediately break and win a free-kick, which Lukaku fires over.

Breathless stuff!

Chance!

2021-06-27T20:40:59Z

They very nearly do!!

Ruben Dias meets a corner with a bullet header that Thibaut Courtois punches away!

It was straight at the Belgium no.1 - either side of him and that was a goal.

🟨

2021-06-27T20:40:11Z

Just as a type that, Toby Alderweireld is shown a yellow card for wiping out Joao Felix!

Nine minutes left - can Portugal get back into this!

Ref! 🗣️

2021-06-27T20:38:59Z

We've got to that stage where every time there is a foul the players are screaming for a booking and/or red card. It's a tough fonr for referee Felix Brych to handle!

🟨

2021-06-27T20:36:03Z

It all kicks off momentarily!

Pepe, unsurprisingly, is at the heart of things as he clatters into Thorgan Hazard with his forearm. 

A brief melee ensues - but he is only shown the yellow card!

Ronaldo takes...

2021-06-27T20:32:34Z

.....but it hits the wall!!

🟨

2021-06-27T20:31:08Z

Another deserved booking, this time for Thomas Vermaelen, who barges into the back of Joao Felix.

Ronaldo stands over the free kick.....

Things getting heated now

2021-06-27T20:28:10Z

Eden Hazard goes down under a challenge from Bruno Fernandes - though the Portugal players think he is exaggerating the injury as he rolls around on the floor. 

Ronaldo wanders off waving his arms in frustration before Romelu Lukaku and Pepe nearly come to blows and need to be spoken to by the referee.

After all that Hazard is able to continue! 😂

Chance for Bruno!

2021-06-27T20:21:14Z

A first sight of goal for Bruno Fernandes as he controls a high pass before sending a snap half-volley from distance over the bar.

Minuted later, at the other end, Romelu Lukaku hits a left-footed volley from just outside the area that also goes just over.

The game is starting to open up 🔥

Close!

2021-06-27T20:17:07Z

That's better from Portugal - and great play from Ronaldo as he skips past three players before feeding Diogo Jota, who takes a touch before firing a half-volley over the bar!

They needed to step things up and it looks like they are about to.

Double sub for Portugal 🇵🇹

2021-06-27T20:14:39Z

Joao Moutinho and Bernardo Silva are replaced by Joao Felix and Bruno Fernandes.

🟨

2021-06-27T20:09:53Z

Diogo Dalot is deservedly booked for dragging back Eden Hazard after the Belgium man had span away from him.

As blatent as they come.

Huge blow for Belgium!

2021-06-27T20:06:04Z

Kevin De Bruyne is coming off!

He was injured by that Joao Palhinha hack towards the end of the first half and obviously tried to give it a go at the start of the second period, but he cannot continue.

The Manchester City man shakes his head as he trudges off to be replaced by Dries Mertens.

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Second half under way ⏰ ⚽

2021-06-27T20:05:37Z

We go again!!

Warning Hazard

2021-06-27T20:01:09Z

More lovely Hazard brothers facts: Thorgan Hazard has more Euros goals in three appearances (2) than his brother Eden Hazard has in nine games (1).

Brotherly love

2021-06-27T19:50:55Z

Half-time ⏰

2021-06-27T19:48:23Z

Belgium 1-0 Portugal

A Thorgan Hazard wonderstrike has lit up what was a pretty ordinary opening 45 minutes - work to do for Portugal at the break!

Thorgan Hazard Belgium Portugal Euro 2020
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De Bruyne is back on his feet..

2021-06-27T19:47:18Z

..and thankfully is able to continue.

Roberto Martinez is not happy with that challenge though, he is remonstrating with the fourth official.

🟨 Yellow card

2021-06-27T19:45:29Z

A deserved booking for Joao Palhinha, who hacks down Kevin De Bruyne as he looked to launch a counter-attack.

De Bruyne is still down receiving treatment.

Goal for Belgium! 🇧🇪 ⚽

2021-06-27T19:42:08Z

What a strike by Thorgan Hazard!!

The Dortmund forward collects the ball just outside the area, gets the ball out of his feet before unleashing a dipping, swerving shot that powers beyond a wrongfooted Rui Patrício!!

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Just as I say that

2021-06-27T19:37:18Z

...Belgium break.

Romelu Lukaku steams forward on a counter-attack and manages to carry on despite having his shirt tugged by Joao Palhinha, before his through-ball is intercepted.

Moments later Thomas Meunier cuts inside from the right and tries a rather ambitious effort with the outside of his foot that goes well over.

Some welcome signs of life in this game though! 🇧🇪

Too close to call

2021-06-27T19:32:20Z

The game has settled down a bit now, but there is not much to call between the two sides.

Romelu Lukaku is been expertly marshalled by Pepe, while Ronaldo has not offered much beyond that free-kick.

Things can change in an instant, though.....

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Save! 🧤 ⚽

2021-06-27T19:24:55Z

Ronaldo drills in the free-kick but Thibaut Courtois does well to push the ball away!

Don't forget, Ronaldo needs just one more goal to break world record for international goals.

Chance incoming?

2021-06-27T19:22:41Z

Renato Sanches decides to let fly from fully 30 yards, but it's a pretty terrible effort and flies well over.

Moments later, Diogo Jota is fouled just outside the area. 

Free kick Portugal. Ronaldo standing over it.....

Ouch 💥

2021-06-27T19:14:34Z

That's a painful one.

Joao Moutinho miscontrols and in stretching for the ball catches Axel Witsel on the top of his foot with his studs.

Both players go down, but after some treatment are able to continue - albeit gingerly.

First chance for Belgium

2021-06-27T19:11:25Z

Eden Hazard plays a neat one-two with Romelu Lukaku, but he gets underneath his first-time shot on the egde of the box and the ball fizzes over.

There are plenty of boos when Belgium have the ball, it's clear that Portugal fans are the majority inside the Stadium La Cartuja.

Like a fine wine

2021-06-27T19:09:27Z

Pepe (38 years and 121 days) has become the oldest outfield player to start a European Championships knockout match.
Pepe; Portugal Vs France
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Chance..

2021-06-27T19:05:38Z

......Wide!

The first chance of the game goes to Portugal. 🇵🇹

Renato Sanches leads a rapid counter-attack and tees up Diogo Jota inside the area, but his shot flashes wide!

Big opportunity for the Liverpool man.

Kick-off! ⏰

2021-06-27T19:00:06Z

With a quarter-final against Italy in Munich the prize - We are under way!

Reminder of the teams...

2021-06-27T18:56:50Z

The two sides are out on the pitch in Seville, here is a reminder of the two teams:

Belgium: Courtois, Alderweireld, Vermaelen, Vertonghen, Meunier, Tielemans, Witsel, T Hazard, De Bruyne, E Hazard Lukaku.

Portugal: Rui Patricio, Dalot, Pepe, Ruben Dias, Guerreiro, Renato Sanches, Joao Palhinha, Moutinho, Bernardo Silva, Ronaldo, Jota.

Game slipped out of our hands - de Ligt

2021-06-27T18:41:45Z

Netherlands defender Matthijs de Ligt said they let the game ahainst the Czech Republic "slip out of their hands" - and unfortaunte choice of words given De Ligt's dismissal for deliberate handball turned the game in the Czech's favour.

He told NOS: "We actually lost because of my action, that feels very annoying. Of course this is bad. We had the game under control and then a ball comes, I let it bounce, which in hindsight was not good, I got a light push and fell, after which I handled it. In the end this moment changes the game and I can't let that happen to me. I watched the last few minutes as the team struggled. I really blame myself.

"I didn't feel like it slipped out of our hands. We were in control and had some chances in the first half. In the second half, of course, we had the one on one with the 'keeper.

"The red card made the difference. The Czech Republic is a physically strong team that does not shy away from duels. We had a hard time with that. It was a 50-50 match where the red card made the difference.

"This European Championship was a golden opportunity, but if you're eliminated like that, it's very painful. We did well in the group stage. Then you fly out in the last-16 against the Czech Republic. That's very sour."

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Belgium XI to face Portugal

2021-06-27T18:28:14Z

Roberto Martinez has made several changes to the team that faced Finland in thelr last group stage game.

Toby Alderweireld and Jan Vertonghen are back in the defence alongside Thomas Vermaelen. 

Thomas Meunier, Thorgan Hazard and Youri Tielemans are also back in the starting XI.

Netherlands powerless after red card - Wijnaldum

2021-06-27T18:14:02Z

Georginio Wijnaldum was left devastated by Netherlands' defeat. The midfielder admits his side could not compensate for the red card to Matthijs de Ligt.

Asked by NOS if they were powerless after the dismissal, he said: "After that red card, yes. Then it was harder for us to put pressure on. If we had the ball, we couldn't get out. We lost the ball very quickly.

"I don't think we handled the way the Czech Republic put pressure on us well. We also didn't handle the spaces we were given properly. In the second half we get a good chance and we don't take it. Then we don't pay attention once and we get a red card."

Toothless Netherlands

2021-06-27T18:00:22Z

It's all over - Czech Repulic go through

2021-06-27T17:55:51Z

Czech Republic progress to the quarter-finals with a 2-0 win against Netherlands!

Matthijs de Ligt's red card will go down as the pivotal moment but there was also Donyell Malen's missed chance just seconds before it.

Czech Republic did well to capitalise on their numerical advantage, though, and their goals were well worked. 

They will meet Denmark in the next round and will surely fancy their chances after overcoming Frank de Boer's team!

It's 2-0!

2021-06-27T17:38:01Z

Patrik Schick has scored for Czech Republic!

They've capitalised on the holes in the Dutch defence and have the result beyond doubt now.

Holes pounces on the ball and runs towards goal, he cuts back and Schick gets there ahead of Blind to knock beyond Stekelenburg.

Weghorst comes on

2021-06-27T17:33:42Z

Netherlands are hoping for a great impact from Wout Weghorst.

The striker has come on for midfielder Marten de Roon.

Czech Republic score!

2021-06-27T17:27:33Z

The Czech Republic have scored!

It's Tomas Holes who gets the opener.

The ball sails to the back post and is headed back across goal, where Holes waits to nod in from close range.

Kaderabek blocked

2021-06-27T17:22:45Z

Dumfries has just pulled off a crucial intervention for Netherlands.

Kaderabek got the ball in the box and lined up a shot but it was blocked by the right-back.

Czech Republic really piling the pressure on now!

Czechs make Oranje go red

2021-06-27T17:20:19Z

Promes on for Malen

2021-06-27T17:16:54Z

Frank de Boer has responded to the red card by bringing Quincy Promes on to replace Donyell Malen.

Promes is a winger but he has proved adept at filling in as a wing back at times for Netherlands. Patrick van Aanholt will move further towards the middle as a result.

De Ligt gets a red card

2021-06-27T17:12:46Z

Matthijs de Ligt has been sent off for a handball.

The defender went down and slapped the ball away at the same time, preventing a goalscoring opportunity for Patrik Schick.

Malen wastes a golden chance

2021-06-27T17:09:53Z

Donyell Malen was through on goal. 

He looked set to score, just needed to pull the trigger.

But he didn't! Tomas Vaclik came off his line and took the ball from him. Incredible intervention from the goalkeeper.

Second half underway

2021-06-27T17:04:18Z

And we have kicked off once again!

Will we find a winner in this half or will it go to extra time?

An entertaining but inefficient first half

2021-06-27T16:59:26Z

Half-time

2021-06-27T16:48:22Z

That was the last action of the first period.

The referee has blown for half-time with the score still 0-0.

Memphis creates a chance

2021-06-27T16:47:27Z

Memphis did really well to turn his man and work the ball to Patrick van Aanholt inside the box.

But the left-back's shot was a typical left-back shot and posed no real danger.

Great opportunity for Czech Republic

2021-06-27T16:39:53Z

Wow! 

Czech Republic had a great opportunity there as they got into Netherlands' penalty area but the shot ended up going over the bar.

Netherlands responded with a dangerous attack of their own but were kept out.

Czech Republic have potential down the right

2021-06-27T16:35:20Z

Czech Republic's most promising attacks have come down the right wing.

Vladimir Coufal just sent an inviting ball into the Netherlands' box but Matthijs de Ligt was able to snuff out the danger.

Malen or Weghorst - the dilemma rears its head again

2021-06-27T16:27:34Z

The debate about whether Malen or Weghorst should partner Depay is one every Netherlands fan has an opinion on.

The pair offer very different possibilities and coach De Boer has argued that which one is better really depends on the opponent.

You can see in this game just why it is such a dilemma. Malen's pace makes him a great threat, but he has not been able to find the space to put it to good use in dangerous areas so far. Czech Republic are paying close attention and are careful not to give him too much space.

Weghorst, on the other hand, offers a constant presence up front. He can occupy centre-backs and push the defence back to give Depay and Georginio Wijnaldum more space to threaten while also being available as a target for crosses and to fight for loose balls in the box.

Will De Boer have to bring the Wolfsburg star on in the second half?

Czech Republic come close

2021-06-27T16:23:02Z

Soucek just saw a diving header go across the face of the Netherlands goal.

A good chance for the Czech Republic after an encouraging attack.

Netherlands giving Czech Republic something to worry about

2021-06-27T16:11:01Z

Netherlands are looking capable of posing a threat now. 

They are getting bodies forward and looking for space behind the back line but they are finding they are up against a stubborn and hard-working opponent.

Czech Republic putting the Dutch under pressure

2021-06-27T16:06:37Z

Czech Republic are pushing really high up field and putting the Dutch under a lot of pressure outside their own box.

They're taking their time in possession until they get into midfield, then trying to pick up the pace a bit.

Netherlands attack early

2021-06-27T16:02:23Z

Netherlands get on the attack quickly as Memphis Depay plays Donyell Malen down the left wing.

The PSV star sends a cross into the back post where Denzel Dumfries is running in but it bounces out for a goal kick.

Czech Republic respond by getting forward but they can only produce a wayward shot.

Kick-off!

2021-06-27T16:00:45Z

The game is underway!

Czech Republic have got the ball rolling.

Who will go on to face Denmark in the quarter-final? We'll find out soon enough!

De Boer hopes Malen's speed comes in useful

2021-06-27T15:51:25Z

Frank de Boer has faced constant questions around one position throughout Euro 2020.

Whether Oranje are stronger up front with Wout Weghorst or Donyell Malen partnering Memphis Depay has been one of the big talking points after each game.

Weghorst had an excellent season at Wolfsburg and struck in the opener against Ukraine, but Malen has been brilliant for PSV and impressed coming off the bench.

In the end, De Boer chose Malen for this game, telling NOS: "Wout did well, but so did Donyell. He was also good in the past. We want to create a threat with his speed. The Czech Republic defenders are not the fastest, hopefully we can take advantage of that."

Czech Republic on a good run vs Oranje

2021-06-27T15:35:38Z

This is the first game between these two teams in almost six years.

The last time they met, Czech Republic won 3-2, having got the better of them the previous time, too, winning 2-1.

Netherlands are out for their first win against the Czech Republic since 2005.

UEFA denies banning rainbow flags

2021-06-27T15:15:42Z

A report by Dutch news outlet Nu claimed today that UEFA has banned any rainbow flags from the fan zone in Budapest.

But the governing body has denied such claims in a tweet, saying: "Contrary to some reports in Dutch media, UEFA would like to clarify that it has not banned any rainbow-coloured symbols from the fan zone in Budapest, which is under the responsibility of the local authorities. UEFA would very much welcome any such symbol into the fan zone.

"UEFA today informed the Hungarian Football Federation that rainbow-coloured symbols are not political and in line with UEFA’s #EqualGame campaign, which fights against all discrimination, including against the LGBTQI+ community, such flags will be allowed into the stadium."

How are Czech Republic lining up?

2021-06-27T14:56:08Z

Czech Republic have made a few more changes to their starting XI.

Pavel Kaderabek has started at left-back instead of Jan Boril, who featured against England.

Antonin Barak has come in to replace Vladimir Darida at attacking midfield and Petr Sevcik starts at left wing as Jakub Jankto misses out.

The teams are in...

2021-06-27T14:51:04Z

Netherlands coach Frank de Boer has opted for a similar starting XI to that which faced North Macedonia in their last group stage match.

The one change is the return of Maarten de Roon to the midfield alongside Frenkie de Jong and Georginio Wijnaldum.

Meanwhile, Donyell Malen keeps his place up front with Memphis Depay after impressing on his first start against North Macedonia.

Let's get started!

2021-06-27T14:49:27Z

Welcome to the Goal matchday blog!

Today we will be covering the last-16 ties, beginning with Netherlands vs Czech Republic in Budapest.

Then we will take in the clash between Belgium and Portugal in Seville.