Day 3 of Euro 2016 is in the books with a couple of Arsenal players in action.
Croatia bested Turkey in the first match of the day 1-0. Real Madrid midfielder Luka Modric hit a stunning volley from outside of the box to give the Croatians all three points. Former Gunner Oguzhan Ozyakup started the match for Turkey but was unimpressive and taken off at halftime.
In the second match of the day, Gunner goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny kept a clean sheet in a largely uneventful 1-0 win over Northern Ireland. Poland’s No. 1 did not have much to do, but did make a couple of crucial punches and distributed the ball from the back fairly well. Ajax’s Arkadiusz Milik, after spurning a few good chances in the first half, hammered home the only goal in 50th minute. Also impressive was Poland’s attacking midfielder Bartosz Kapustka, a 19 year old with the Polish side Cracovia. He seems ripe to be one of those players that earns a big move after an impressive tournament performance. With the win, Poland joined Wales as first-time Euro match-winners.
In the final match of the day, Germany defeated Ukraine 2-0. Quite obviously, Mustafi opened the scoring for the Germans by heading home a Toni Kroos whipped in free kick. Ukraine did fight back though, and had an amazing chance in the 37th minute through Taras Stepanenko only to be denied by one of the best defensive blocks and clearances in recent memory from Jerome Boateng. Seriously, if you did not see it, run, don’t walk, to the replay.
Arsenal’s talisman Mesut Özil had a really good chance to put Germany up two in the 87th minute as he was played through on goal, but his shot was stifled by the onrushing keeper. He did collect an assist in stoppage time as Germany broke quickly on a counterattack off of a Ukraine corner. Özil was played a little wide but put in a perfect cross to Bastian Schweinsteiger, and the Manchester United man made no mistake.