Miloš Simić scored with 0.3 seconds remaining to send Serbia into their first UEFA Futsal EURO semi-final and the capacity 11,161 crowd in Belgrade into raptures.
Serbia could not have wished for a better start as just 86 seconds in Mladen Kocić knocked across to Slobodan Janjić, who drew the keeper and returned for Kocić to put the hosts ahead.
Ukraine had their chances throughout the first half, hitting the woodwork three times, and early in the second period Mykola Grytsyna turned in Sergiy Koval's corner. It seemed extra time would be needed until somehow Simić smashed in a shot after Marko Perić's pass.
The winner! Serbia pushed harder and harder as the second half wore on, drawing a fifth Ukraine foul and eventually Simić's goal.
Ukraine had chances
Until the last five minutes Ukraine dominated the chance count but must settle for a fourth straight quarter-final loss. They will regret missed opportunities, especially in the first half.
How far can Serbia go?
Azerbaijan are no walkover for Russia, who have not been in top form, and with another noisy crowd at their backs on Thursday, Serbia can dream of the final.
Aca Kovačević, Serbia coach
Maybe some of you didn't see that but it was it was 40 minutes of fight on the pitch. I haven’t seen a match like this for a long time. We had chances to win it earlier, especially from counterattacks but in the end this miracle happened. In my long futsal career I have maybe seen this happen once in this sort of event.
At the end, before all the emotions came through we, I had to congratulate Ukraine, I cannot imagine how hard it is to lose in this way. I saw them in shock, they were full of tears, but in sport someone has to lose and someone has to progress to the semi-finals. This result is not just the achievement of the players on the pitch but that of the whole history of Serbian futsal. We will be the more inexperienced team in the semi-finals but with the support of our fans we can go even further. I am grateful for have two rest days now.
Oleksandr Kosenko, Ukraine coach
It is really painful to lose with 0.3 seconds to go. We had no time to respond. We told the players we needed to play from the first second to the last, unfortunately we could no manage that. It is a problem that we weren’t able to take our chances. With each miss our players' confidence dropped. If we could have scored again, it would have been another game, but that is a problem.
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