Poland get off to winning start

Funny Moments – Matchday 34

Poland emerged deserved 1-0 victors against Northern Ireland on Sunday after dominating their Euro 2016 opener at the Allianz Riviera in Nice.

  • Poland 1 Northern Ireland 0
  • White Eagles dominate proceedings
  • Goalless at half-time
  • Milik gives Poles the lead
  • Szczesny denies Washington equaliser

Match Summary

After spurning a couple of chances before the break, the Poles took the lead seven minutes into the second half with the assured finish from Arkadiusz Milik.

Michael O'Neill's side barely threatened although they did get a chance to equalise when Conor Washington broke through on goal, but he was denied by Wojciech Szczesny.

The Whites Eagles managed to see out the remainder of the match to pick up three points which moved them into pole position in Group C ahead of Germany's clash with Ukraine.

Full Report

Norn Iron were making their debut in the European Championship after an impressive qualifying campaign but they struggled to match a dominant Poland.

Adam Nawalka's men had a few half chances in the opening stages before Milik was presented with their first real opportunity to break the deadlock on 31 minutes, which he skied over from eight yards out following Lukasz Piszczek's cross on the right.

Bartosz Kapustka went even closer just before half-time after Northern Ireland had failed to clear their lines, but Michael McGovern pulled off a smart save to keep him out on the volley from inside the area.

Poland continued to press and they were rewarded on 52 minutes when Jakub Blaszczykowski was played in on the right and he crossed the ball in for Milik, who took one touch before firing a low shot through the legs of the defender and past the out-stretched glove of McGovern.

Poland's defence hadn't really been tested until Washington raced through on goal in the 73rd minute, but Szczesny was quick to cut out the danger with a brave block.

Steven Davis was a fraction away from grabbing a late equaliser with five minutes left on the clock as a clever free-kick routine just evaded the lunging midfielder.