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U21 EURO daily bulletin: Wednesday 17 June

UEFA.com looks back on the day when Group A kicked off and the Group B sides completed their preparations before embarking on their U21 EURO challenge.

Denmark clinched an opening-game win on Wednesday
Denmark clinched an opening-game win on Wednesday ©Getty Images

Group A
Czech Republic 1-2 Denmark
• The tournament hosts deservedly held a half-time lead thanks to Pavel Kadeřábek, but Denmark improved after the break and took victory through goals from Jannik Vestergaard and Pione Sisto.
• "We were a little bit lucky that we weren't more than one-nil down at half-time. But in the end, we won the game, and that could be very important for the tournament." Jess Thorup, Denmark coach Full reaction.

Germany 1-1 Serbia
• Emre Can cancelled out Filip Djuričić's early strike before Christian Günter's red card left both teams content enough to open with a draw.
• "We know how good Germany are, but we can say we missed chances to get an even better result. However, if someone had offered us 1-1 before the match, we probably would have accepted it." Mladen Dodić, Serbia coach. Full reaction.

Group B
Gareth Southgate confirmed at his pre-match press conference that defender John Stones would miss England's opening Group B game against Portugal and Sunday's fixture with Sweden after suffering a head injury in training. England had earlier trained in Olomouc where captain Jack Butland senses the same togetherness in the camp he felt with the team that won the European U17 title in 2010. "This team reminds me a lot of that group. It's difficult to get that togetherness and a lot of club teams can't get to where we're at as a group off the pitch. That's testament to the players Gareth's chosen and the players that are here. They want to succeed, they want to win it, but they know that we can only do that if we're together."

Speaking to media on the eve of Italy's opening game against Sweden at Ander Stadium, Azzurrini captain Matteo Bianchetti said he was looking forward to the start of the tournament: "We are prepared as well as we were in 2013. We have a fantastic group, there is a special feeling and blend between us. We are ready to start and do our best."

UEFA.com took advantage of the fact that Ricardo Pereira attended Portugal's press conference in Uherske Hradiste to ask for the Porto player's reaction to being Portugal's most expensive player in UEFA.com's Fantasy Football. "Really? I wasn't aware of that," said Ricardo sporting a wide grin. "You can tell by my face that I'm a bit surprised with the news. It is always nice when something like that happens but you know, there are no stars in our group of players. We are all equally important. If I'm that expensive probably I won't be picked a lot by the users..." Who knows? Maybe tomorrow he will start rewarding those who think he is a bargain rather than a luxury.

Sweden coach Håkan Ericson said his team were ready to surprise people in Group B. "People around Europe see us as the fourth team in the group but we have big expectations," he said. The Swedes spent a significant slice of their open training session working on set-pieces and they will be followed by 1,000 fans at the Ander Stadium where striker Isaac Kiese Thelin is expected to feature after recovering from a heel problem.

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