This afternoon, the National Arena in Bucharest was the scene of the match between Ukraine and North Macedonia. Two revengeful formations after losing on the first day of Group C. While Andriy Shevchenko’s Sbirna had been beaten 3-2 after a crazy match against the Netherlands, the Macedonian Red Lions were defeated by Austria (3-1). Suffice to say that a victory was imperative to avoid an early elimination. Aligned in 4-3-3, the Ukrainians took their opponents by the throat and deprived them of the ball. And they quickly became dangerous.
Malinovskyi, who was looking for a teammate in the area, was stopped by Dimitrievski, after an exit with two fists (5th). The Macedonian goalkeeper was still solid on his line after a shot from the left at the near post from Malinovskyi (8th). Dominated, North Macedonia, organized in 5-3-2, reacted with Bardi (15th) and Elmas (16th). Safe for Bushchan. Sbirna then regained control of the ball and pushed to break through the opposing block. After a first attempt from the deflected left (23rd), Yarmolenko, served in the box, struck a pivot in a closed angle. But Dimitrievski was watching (28th).
Precious victory for Ukraine
A minute later, Yarmolenko, alone at the far post following a corner kick, sent the leather to the back of the net (1-0, 29th). Yaremchuk doubled the lead in the 35th. Served in depth, he won his duel against Dimitrievski by scoring right (2-0). North Macedonia responded with Pandev who, after a good job, thought to reduce the score by a dive. But his goal was denied for offside. Ukraine continued until the break (2-0). On resumption, the Red Lions attacked hard with Ademi, whose point-blank range was repelled by Bushchan (47th). It was then Dimitrievski’s turn to shine. He came out of Malinovskyi’s strike with a nice tap (51st). Everything was going quickly afterwards.
After an important stop, Bushchan was again in demand following a penalty obtained by Pandev, tackled by Karavaev (55th). In two stages, Alioski transformed him (2-1, 57th). Both teams were pushing. While Malinovskyi forced Dimitrievski to another stop (65th), Trajkovski did the same with Bushchan (68th). The goalkeepers were on fire, as Dimitrievski repelled a penalty from Malinovskyi, awarded following a hand from Avramovsky in the area detected after using the VAR (84th). Despite Macedonian attempts, Ukraine won 2-1 and revived in Group C with 3 points, awaiting the result of the Netherlands-Austria game tonight. With 0 point on the clock, North Macedonia is virtually eliminated.