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Necid shows nerve to rescue Czech Republic

Published: Friday 17 June 2016, 19.55CET
Czech Republic 2-2 Croatia
Substitute duo Milan Škoda and Tomáš Necid earned Pavel Vrba's men an unlikely draw after Croatia looked set to clinch a last-16 berth.
by Chris Burke at Stade Geoffroy Guichard

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Match statistics

Czech RepublicCroatia

Goals scored2
 
2
Possession (%)44
 
56
Total attempts7
 
19
on target4
 
6
off target0
8
blocked3
 
5
against woodwork0
 
0
Corners2
 
11
Offsides1
 
0
Yellow cards1
 
3
Red Cards0
 
0
Fouls committed15
 
13
Fouls suffered12
 
15

Standings

Legend:

P: Played   
Pts: Points   
Last updated: 16/06/2017 10:40 CET
SSI Err
Published: Friday 17 June 2016, 19.55CET

Necid shows nerve to rescue Czech Republic

Czech Republic 2-2 Croatia
Substitute duo Milan Škoda and Tomáš Necid earned Pavel Vrba's men an unlikely draw after Croatia looked set to clinch a last-16 berth.

  • Ivan Perišić and Ivan Rakitić give Croatia 2-0 lead by 59 minutes
  • Substitute Milan Škoda reduces deficit after Croatia lose Luka Modrić to injury
  • Brief pause in play while objects cleared from pitch
  • Out of starting lineup, Tomáš Necid seals draw with late penalty
  • Next games in Group D, 21 June: Czech Republic v Turkey, Croatia v Spain
  • All the build-up, match action and reaction as it happened on EURO2016.com


Tomáš Necid came off the bench to score a dramatic late penalty and salvage a 2-2 Group D draw for Czech Republic in Saint-Etienne which denied Croatia an early spot in the last 16 at UEFA EURO 2016.

With an emotional Darijo Srna back wearing the captain's armband five days after the death of his father, Croatia established a swift control on the contest that looked set to hand them a comfortable win. As Luka Modrić prompted from deep and Ivan Rakitić added zip further forward, a knockout place alongside France and Italy seemed to open up for Ante Čačić's men when Ivan Perišić struck on 37 minutes.

Having already slid in unsuccessfully to cap a dazzling counterattack, the Internazionale midfielder bamboozled Tomáš Sivok with quick footwork and drilled the ball inside the far post after Milan Badelj had reclaimed possession. It was no more than Croatia deserved. And they doubled their advantage with an even more elegant finish, Rakitić clipping the ball delightfully over Petr Čech after being played in by Marcelo Brozović.

The Czechs looked destined for a second straight loss, but after Modrić limped off with an apparent groin injury, Pavel Vrba's side found their way back thanks to a pair of substitutes. Milan Škoda headed home to make it interesting. That was followed by a brief pause in proceedings to clear away objects thrown onto the pitch. After play had resumed, another replacement – Tomáš Necid – converted a late penalty following Domagoj Vida's handball.

Man of the match: Ivan Rakitić
How Rakitić did not finish on the winning side is a mystery, the Barcelona midfielder having stamped his authority on this match with energy and ambition – not to mention a superb goal. He had already tested Čech by that point and could have had an assist when Mario Mandžukić blazed over from a teasing pass. Ultimately, this was not Croatia's day, but Rakitić was a joy to behold.

Croatia's captain invincible
When Srna flew home following the news his father had passed away during Sunday's 1-0 defeat of Turkey, some wondered if his tournament was over. No chance. "My father's last wish was that I have to play here," said the veteran right-back, who sang the national anthem through tears and gritted teeth before putting in an accomplished performance. His 131rd game for Croatia may not have ended as hoped, but Srna is a man on a mission.

Vrba earns his keep
There was a slight surprise in the Czech Republic line-up as coach Vrba opted to leave Necid out of his XI, with David Lafata chosen to lead the line. Vrba knew what he was doing. Necid came on late having scored seven of his 11 international goals as a substitute – and he made it eight from 12 just three minutes later, in the 89th, with a superb penalty. All that after fellow sub Škoda had made the incredible revival possible.

Team reporters' views from Stade Geoffroy Guichard

Čech: We dug deep to get a point

Ondřej Zlámal, Czech Republic (@UEFAcomOndrejZ)
The Czechs needed to win but also avoid mistakes in critical areas of the pitch – and this did not happen. Jaroslav Plašil was caught in possession for the opener, and even captain Tomáš Rosický was guilty of wayward passes. Vrba's side showed more courage after the break, yet were running aground against a focused Croatian defence and conceded again on the counterattack. Just when all hope seemed lost, however, they mounted a sensational comeback to keep their campaign alive. Breath-taking stuff.

Elvir Islamović, Croatia (@UEFAcomElvirI)
If you thought Croatia played well against Turkey, this was fantastic until the late collapse. I can't remember the last time I saw such a good display from Croatia as they established their two-goal lead – excellent in all departments, with every player giving his maximum. Not only did they show heart and strength, they appeared tactically perfect as well. However, everything began to unravel after Modrić left the field, and all Croatia will be hoping his injury is nothing serious.

Last updated: 12/07/16 17.45CET

http://www.uefa.com/uefaeuro/season=2016/matches/round=2000448/match=2017892/postmatch/report/index.html#croatia+reach+last

Lineups

Czech Republic

Czech Republic

Croatia

Croatia

1
ČechPetr Čech (GK)
23
SubašićDanijel Subašić (GK)
2
KadeřábekPavel Kadeřábek
3
StrinićIvan Strinić
Substitution90+1
5
HubníkRoman Hubník
4
PerišićIvan Perišić
Goal37
6
SivokTomáš Sivok
Yellow Card72
5
ĆorlukaVedran Ćorluka
8
LimberskýDavid Limberský
7
RakitićIvan Rakitić
Goal59
Substitution90+2
10
RosickýTomáš Rosický (C)
10
ModrićLuka Modrić
Substitution62
13
PlašilJaroslav Plašil
Substitution86
11
SrnaDarijo Srna (C)
19
KrejčíLadislav Krejčí
14
BrozovićMarcelo Brozović
Yellow Card74
20
SkalákJiří Skalák
Substitution67
17
MandžukićMario Mandžukić
21
LafataDavid Lafata
Substitution67
19
BadeljMilan Badelj
Yellow Card14
22
DaridaVladimír Darida
21
VidaDomagoj Vida
Yellow Card88

Substitutes

16
VaclíkTomáš Vaclík (GK)
1
VargićIvan Vargić (GK)
23
KoubekTomáš Koubek (GK)
12
KalinićLovre Kalinić (GK)
3
KadlecMichal Kadlec
2
VrsaljkoŠime Vrsaljko
Substitution90+1
4
Gebre SelassieTheodor Gebre Selassie
6
JedvajTin Jedvaj
7
NecidTomáš Necid
Substitution86
Goal89
8
KovačićMateo Kovačić
Substitution62
9
DočkalBořek Dočkal
9
KramarićAndrej Kramarić
11
PudilDaniel Pudil
13
SchildenfeldGordon Schildenfeld
Substitution90+2
12
ŠkodaMilan Škoda
Substitution67
Goal76
15
RogMarko Rog
14
KolářDaniel Kolář
16
N. KalinićNikola Kalinić
15
PavelkaDavid Pavelka
18
ĆorićAnte Ćorić
17
SuchýMarek Suchý
20
PjacaMarko Pjaca
18
ŠuralJosef Šural
Substitution67
22
ČopDuje Čop

Coach

Pavel Vrba (CZE) Ante Čačić (CRO)

Referee

Mark Clattenburg (ENG)

Assistant referees

Simon Beck (ENG), Jake Collin (ENG)

Fourth official

Tasos Sidiropoulos (GRE)

Additional assistant referees

Anthony Taylor (ENG), Andre Marriner (ENG)

Legend:

  • GoalsGoals
  • Own goalOwn goal
  • PenaltiesPenalties
  • Missed PenaltiesMissed Penalties
  • reds_cardRed Cards
  • yellow_cardsYellow cards
  • yellow_red_cardsYellow/red card
  • SubstitutionSubstitution