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Full-time: Northern Ireland 0-1 Germany

Full-time: Ukraine 0-1 Poland

  • Germany reach last 16 as Group C winners following dominant victory at the Parc des Princes in Paris
  • Mario Gomez scores the only goal of the game with a deflected strike after being unselfishly teed up by Thomas Muller
  • The world champions created a plethora of chances, hit the woodwork twice and were frustrated by a series of brilliant saves from goalkeeper Michael McGovern
  • Joachim Low's side will now face the third-place team from Group A/B/F in Lille on Sunday evening
  • Poland reach the knockout stages of the European Championship for the first time at the third attempt and set up Saint-Etienne clash with Switzerland following narrow win in Marseille
  • Substitute Jakub Blaszczykowski nets a fine winner just minutes after coming on at half-time
  • Northern Ireland face an anxious wait to see if three points will be enough to see them through as one of the four best third-placed teams
  • Ukraine exit the competition without a single point or goal to their name
  • Other matches: Spain vs Croatia, Czech Republic vs Turkey
  • Rival Poland fans involved in clashes ahead of match against Ukraine
  • Euro 2016 Northern Ireland blog: Irish fans go through range of emotions in France roller coaster

That is all for this blog, but join my IBTimes UK colleague Tony Mogan for further live coverage from Group D as Spain meet Croatia and the Czech Republic entertain Turkey.

Goodbye for now.

A thoroughly dominant victory for Germany, who were only prevented from running up a cricket score due to some tremendous goalkeeping courtesy of McGovern. Low's side progress to the last 16 as Group C winners on seven points and will now face the third-place team from Group A/B/F in Lille on Sunday evening.

Also through are Poland, who could have made things more difficult with another goal in Marseille. The 2012 co-hosts will compete in the knockout stages for the very first time and will meet Group A runners-up Switzerland in Saint-Etienne on Saturday.

Northern Ireland will wait to see if three points is enough to see them through as one of the four best third-place teams. Ukraine go home without a goal or a point to show for their efforts.


Northern Ireland 0-1 Germany

Ukraine 0-1 Poland

The noisy Northern Ireland contingent let out a roar as their team are awarded a late free-kick. McGovern pumps it long but the whistle blows for an infringement and that should be it.

Kimmich looks to provide more ammunition for Gomez, but his low cross lacks accuracy and is hacked into touch by Cathcart.

Three minutes of added time signalled by the fourth official at the Parc des Princes. Ozil drills a half-volley wide with his weaker right foot.

Tired defending from Northern Ireland allows a determined Muller to find Gomez, whose low drive lacks power and is easily scooped up by McGovern.

It sounds like Ukraine are edging close to an equaliser against Poland, with Fabianski denying Rotan and Zozulya heading wide. They will be desperate not to bow out of the competition without scoring a single goal.

O'Neill uses his last substitution to send on McGinn for Corry Evans. Still no game time at Euro 2016 for cult hero Will Grigg...

Kimmich certainly does not look out of place in senior international football and he almost provides an assist when Gomez rises above Hughes to power a header that is saved by the fingertips of McGovern.

What an evening the goalkeeper is having.

Michael McGovern
Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

Hector gets his bearings all wrong with an attempted cross to the back post and it sails behind. Magennis is aggrieved to have been whistled for backing in while trying to facilitate a rare Northern Ireland attack.

Kimmich blazes over before Germany make their final change. Howedes jogs on in place of Boateng, who is looking to avoid his second yellow card of the competition.


Schweinsteiger takes to the field to replace Khedira. The Manchester United midfielder missed the last two months of the 2015/16 Premier League season with a knee injury but came off the bench to net in injury time against Ukraine.

O'Neill also makes his second change as Josh Magennis comes on for Ward. 20 minutes plus stoppage time remaining.

Northern Ireland are still struggling to get on the ball and create any problems for this German defence. You sense that set-piece prowess offers their best chance of scabbing an undeserved equaliser.

Jonny Evans saw a header deflected over a few minutes ago.

McGovern makes another fine stop to deny Khedira and Gomez then puts it wide. Kapustka, Zinchenko and Konoplyanka have all spurned opportunities in Marseille.

Cracovia midfielder Kapustka will now miss the last 16 after picking up his second booking of the tournament.

Germany have replaced Gotze with Andre Schurrle and Northern Ireland send on Lafferty for Washington.

After Zinchenko botches a header for Ukraine, they fall behind. Poland substitute Blaszczykowski collects a pass from Arkadiusz Milik and shows good skill before working the ball onto his left foot and wrapping a shot around Andriy Pyatov and into the top corner.

What an impact.

Jakub Blaszczykowski

Goal: Ukraine 0-1 Poland (Jakub Blaszczykowski)

McGovern has been the only Northern Ireland player to impress this afternoon and he bravely rushes out once again to save from Gotze, who chested down a searching diagonal pass from Kimmich.

The Bayern Munich playmaker then turns his next effort wide of the post.


We should also mention that sadly Marseille has been the scene of more trouble involving supporters today. AP report that police used tear gas and detained two people after scuffles broke out down at the city's Old Port area.

We are back underway in both matches. As it stands, Germany will go through as group winners and Poland will also advance in second. Northern Ireland will be left with a nervous wait to see if they can also progress.

O'Neill's side definitely cannot afford to be on the receiving end of a heavy drubbing in Paris.

Goalless in Marseille, where Poland started on the front foot and missed a good chance through Lewandowski. Ukraine have been much improved from their previous two outings and could have taken the lead were it not for Pazdan's committed defending and some poor finishing from Yarmolenko.

A case of too little, too late for Fomenko's side.

Andriy Yarmolenko
Getty Images

An exercise in complete dominance from world champions Germany, who have totally controlled this match from the outset and will be wondering how on earth they are only 1-0 ahead. Muller had been rather passive in their opening two games, but could have had a hat-trick in that opening 45 minutes. Gomez should also have more than one goal to his name.

Northern Ireland spent almost all of the half chasing the ball in vain and expending vast amounts of energy. It has been a thankless task and they will likely have to hope that three points will be enough to secure their passage through to the last 16 as one of the best third-placed teams. But that is not certain at the moment.


Northern Ireland 0-1 Germany

Ukraine 0-0 Poland

Ward blocks Hector's cross and the assistant referee takes a rather painful blow to the midriff. The half-time whistle blows.

Northern Ireland launch a rare foray forward and win themselves a corner, but Ward's inswinger is easily gobbled up by Neuer.

Jerome Boateng then floats in a cross and Muller beats McAuley to the flick on. Gotze leans back and smashes over the crossbar as his blushes are spared by the offside flag.

Still the chances come for Germany. Ozil is the architect again, teeing up Gomez for a first-time shot that he scuffs into the hands of McGovern. The Fiorentina striker, who scored 28 goals on loan at Turkish champions Besiktas last term, should have done much better there.

Kucher also in the book for Ukraine after he brings down Robert Lewandowski.

Khedira almost gets a close-range header on target from Germany's latest corner. Gomez is clearly standing in an offside position as he looks to turn the rebound goalbound.

Yet another glorious opportunity for Muller. This time Gotze gets to the byline and produces a low ball that he curls against the crossbar. Germany should be out of sight already.

Germany have dominated the opening half an hour here and fully merit their lead. Ozil's low pass is turned through to Muller, who tries to work the space for a shot but struggles to escape the attentions of Craig Cathcart, Aaron Hughes and McGovern.

Showing excellent composure, he turns and lays the ball back for Gomez to rifle home via a sizable deflection off McAuley. Somebody press that button...

Mario Gomez
Clive Mason/Getty Images

Goal: Northern Ireland 0-1 Germany (Mario Gomez)

Ukraine see yellow as Rotan is cautioned for a foul on Kapustka. No goals to report yet from Marseille, either.

Jamie Ward dispossesses Gotze in his own half and sprints forward at full pace. He has the chance to play in Washington but instead fires a shot that is straight down the throat of Neuer.

At the other end, the impressive Kimmich provides a cross to the near post and Muller sends a diving header crashing against the woodwork. Very unlucky.

Another chance for Muller to break his Euro 2016 duck goes begging. Kimmich's lobbed ball from the right is wonderfully chested down by Gomez, but the 26-year-old drags his volley narrowly wide of McGovern's right-hand post.

As are the rest of us, Steven...


Jonas Hector charges down the left flank and cuts an incisive ball back into the box that just evades Gomez before being scooped up onto the roof of the net by Ozil. Still goalless.

Over at the Stade Velodrome, Legia Warsaw defender Michal Pazdan has made two blocks in quick succession to repel efforts from Zozulya and Yarmolenko. The latter has also shot over the crossbar while one-on-one with Fabianski.

A statistic that accurately sums up this opening 15 minutes at the Parc des Princes:


Germany are applying some serious early pressure in Paris. McGovern takes a knock while punching a dangerous free-kick clear of Mats Hummels but recovers to thwart Ozil with his right boot.

The Hamilton goalkeeper then denies Gotze and Kimmich chips the rebound over.

Northern Ireland vs Germany

An outstanding touch from Mesut Ozil to thread Kimmich's pass through to Muller sends the Bayern Munich star clear on goal, but Michael McGovern stands tall to make a crucial save.

Germany a whisker away from taking the lead inside 10 minutes.

Germany look to monopolise possession early on but their final ball, most notably from Sami Khedira, has thus far left a lot to be desired.

Manuel Neuer comes tearing out of his box to protect the ball under pressure from Conor Washington as it runs out of play for a Germany throw-in on the near side.

The biggest game in Northern Ireland's footballing history is underway. Can they do enough to progress?

Ukraine-Poland is also off and running.

A reminder that our minute-by-minute focus in this particular blog will be on events between Northern Ireland and Germany, but we will also endeavour to keep you fully up-to-date with the action in Marseille.


Tonight's clash with Poland in Marseille will be Fomenko's last in charge of his native Ukraine. The 67-year-old former USSR international and Dynamo Kiev midfielder, who took the reins in December 2012, will step down after their imminent exit from the tournament and could be replaced by current assistant Andriy Shevchenko.

Speaking to a national TV channel this week, he bemoaned a lack of unity in the squad that was brought on by an altercation between Dynamo's Yarmolenko and Taras Stepanenko of Shakhtar Donetsk in May.

What sense does it make to continue after failing with the task that was set for the tournament? I did not feel the united team that clinched the spot at the Euros finals. I paid attention to this during warm-up games against Cyprus and Wales.

Everyone saw what was going on at the end of the Ukrainian championship. This situation affected the team's psychology. I would like peace and friendship to prevail inside our team. As a man, I am used to being responsible for my actions. I admit my fault. I did it all wrong in that situation.

On the potential appointment of Shevchenko, he added:

Why not? He has experience in football, finished coaching courses and has got his PRO-diploma. God bless him to be as good a coach as he was a player.

Outgoing Ukraine boss Mykhaylo Fomenko shuffles his pack by promoting Oleksandr Kucher, Bohdan Butko, Ruslan Rotan, Oleksandr Zinchenko and Roman Zozulya.

Yaroslav Rakitskiy, Vyacheslav Shevchuk, Serhiy Sydorchuk, Viktor Kovalenko and Yevhen Seleznyov all make way. Wing duo Yevhen Konoplyanka and Andriy Yarmolenko have failed to live up to expectations at the tournament to date but both retain their starting berths.

Lukasz Fabianski continues in goal for Poland with Wojciech Szczesny still not fit following a thigh injury sustained during an accidental collision with Lafferty in Nice.

Brazilian-born defender Thiago Cionek, Liverpool target Piotr Zielinski, Tomasz Jodlowiec and Bartosz Kapustka replace Lukasz Piszczek, Jakub Blaszczykowski, Krzysztof Maczynski and Kamil Grosicki.

Ukraine XI to face Poland: Pyatov, Fedetskiy, Kucher, Khacheridi, Butko, Stepanenko, Rotan, Yarmolenko, Zinchenko, Konoplyanka, Zozulya

Poland XI to face Ukraine: Fabianski, Cionek, Glik, Pazdan, Jedrzejczyk, Zielinski, Jodlowiec, Krychowiak, Kapustka, Milik, Lewandowski

Germany change two, with Bayern Munich defender Joshua Kimmich replacing Benedikt Howedes at right-back. The 21-year-old is set to win only his second senior international cap.

Mario Gomez

As anticipated, Low rejigs his forward unit and brings in experienced striker Mario Gomez at the expense of Julian Draxler. Gotze will drop into a slightly deeper role. Thomas Muller has been unusually quiet so far.

Michael O'Neill makes the brave decision to name an unchanged Northern Ireland XI. After lining up in a defensive manner during the defeat to Poland, he threw off the shackles somewhat against Ukraine and eventually reaped the rewards. It looks as if his side will adopt a similar approach tonight.

Kyle Lafferty, who notched seven goals in qualifying, remains on the bench alongside the likes of McGinn, Manchester United's Paddy McNair, Chris Baird, Shane Ferguson and Will Grigg.

Northern Ireland XI to face Germany: McGovern, Hughes, Cathcart, McAuley, J.Evans, Norwood, Davis, C.Evans, Ward, Dallas, Washington

Germany XI to face Northern Ireland: Neuer, Kimmich, Boateng, Hummels, Hector, Khedira, Kroos, Ozil, Muller, Gotze, Gomez

Three-time winners Germany top the group before kick-off and are yet to concede a single goal, yet their performances have not been particularly impressive. Shkodran Mustafi, Bastian Schweinsteiger and some fine defending from Jerome Boateng helped to see off Ukraine, but a drab goalless draw against Poland at the Stade de France will hardly have struck fear into the hearts of their rivals.

Mario Gotze
Alexander Hassenstein/Getty Images

Joachim Low's insistence on deploying the underwhelming Mario Gotze as a false nine has come under scrutiny and it would not be a surprise to see one or two changes to their attacking setup tonight.

It has been an eventful first European Championships for Northern Ireland, who were desperately insipid and overawed in their opening defeat to Poland before bouncing back as goals from experienced centre-back Gareth McAuley and substitute Niall McGinn saw them beat Ukraine in dreadful conditions on Thursday.

Northern Ireland tribute

Their campaign has also been rocked by tragedy following the deaths of supporters Darren Rodgers and Robert Rainey.

Here are the full permutations for Group C, as expertly laid down by my esteemed colleague Josh Evans:

Germany (Won one, drawn one):

Joachim Low's side have not been at their best in the tournament so far, but a win or a draw in their final group game against Northern Ireland in Paris would secure their place in the round of 16. A draw would also be good enough for them to top the group if the Poles fail to win on the last matchday.

Meanwhile, a Poland win and a draw for Germany would seen them end Group C in second place, meaning they could potentially face a tricky fixture in the next stage.

Northern Ireland (Lost one, won one):

Michael O'Neill's men are certain to finish third in Group C regardless of whether they draw or lose their final group game against the Germans in Paris, meaning they could progress as one of the best third-placed sides in the tournament.

On the flip side, a shock win against the current world champions and defeat for Poland against Ukraine would see Northern Ireland qualify in first place. Meanwhile, they would finish second by beating Germany and Poland drawing their final group game.

Poland (Won one, drawn one):

Poland will qualify for the next stage with a draw or regardless of their result if Northern Ireland lose. However, following their goalless draw in the Stade de France, the Poles and the Germans will be separated by overall goal difference, then overall goals scored, then disciplinary rankings, then coefficient rankings (which would favour Germany) if they finish level on points.

Consequently, Poland will need to win and hope that Northern Ireland draw or beat Germany in their final game. The Poles could also finish second if they draw and Northern Ireland win.

Ukraine (Lost two):

Having already lost to Germany and Northern Ireland, the Ukrainians are not able to qualify for the next stage. They cannot finish above Northern Ireland because of their 2-0 defeat to them in Lyon. However, Mykhaylo Fomenko's side will be seeking a morale-boosting win ahead of their World Cup qualifying campaign for Russia in 2018.

With Wales hammering Russia to surprisingly top Group B and England stumbling through to the last 16 with a largely unconvincing goalless draw against Slovakia last night, today Northern Ireland can join their fellow home nations in the knockout stages for the very first time with a positive result in Paris.

An unlikely victory over leaders and reigning world champions Germany would be enough to secure their progress, while a creditable draw or defeat would leave them uncertain of their fate as one of the tournament's third-placed teams.

Down south in Marseille, meanwhile, Poland require only a point against Ukraine to seal their maiden escape from the group phase at the third time of asking. Adam Nawalka's side will go through regardless of their result if Northern Ireland are unable to topple Germany.

Kick-off in both of these games is at 17.00 BST, so stay tuned for all the build-up, breaking team news, confirmed line-ups and live updates from IBTimes UK.

Northern Ireland vs Germany