Lille, June 15 (TASR) – Napoli playmaker Marek Hamsik was Slovakia’s ace in its campaign to beat Russia 2-1 in Euro 2016 Group B on Wednesday.
Slovakia, who lost 1-2 in the first round to Wales, laid the foundations for defeating Russia in the first half with two beautiful goals scored by Vladimir Weiss and Marek Hamsik. Russia’s substitute Denis Glushakov only managed to mitigate his team’s defeat with a goal in 80th minute.
By gaining these historic three points at a European football championship, Slovakia can now hope to reach the knock-out round of the last 16. The first two teams in each of the six groups make it automatically, while another four best teams from the third place finishers also qualify.
“The Russians were strong on the ball and they were better in possession, while we made it rather uncomfortable for them in turnovers. The second half was only about defending for us. Fortunately, we managed to,” Hamsik told journalist after the match.
Slovakia’s next match is scheduled for June 20 in Saint-Etienne against England.
“It’s going to be the toughest match in the group. Nevertheless, we’ve got enough time to prepare properly for it,” added Hamsik.