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SCHICK STUNNER FOR CZECHS LEAVES SCOTLAND REELING
Patrik Schick – Photo Credit: Wikimedia
Czech Republic’s Patrik Schick scored one of the most remarkable goals in European Championship history as the Czech Republic beat Scotland 2-0 on Monday to get their Euro 2020 campaign off to a flying start and deflate home hopes in Glasgow.
Schick, who had also netted an excellent header in the first half, doubled his tally after the break with a curling, looping effort from just inside the Scotland half, having spotted home keeper David Marshall far off his line. At 49.7 yards, the Bayer Leverkusen forward’s astonishing effort was officially the furthest recorded distance from which a goal has been scored at the European Championship.
Scotland had battled gamely on their return to tournament football after a 23-year absence and spurned a number of excellent chances of their own. While Scotland were profligate, the Czechs were worthy winners, soaking up Scottish pressure in the first half, and quieting a noisy Hampden Park crowd, who were seeing their side play in a major tournament for the first time since the 1998 World Cup.
The result left the Czechs on three points, level at the top of Group D with England, who beat Croatia 1-0 on Sunday.
Scotland began the game at full throttle, fuelled by a vociferous home crowd despite the fact that there were fewer than 10,000 of them in the stadium.
Schick had a snap shot palmed away by Marshall after 15 minutes but he made his mark decisively just before halftime.
The Czechs, who scored more than half of their goals in qualifying from set pieces, earned a string of corners just before the break and finally took advantage in the 42nd minute.
The second half began with a flurry of activity and the Czechs could have extended their lead with first Schick and then Vladimir Darida drawing fine saves from Marshall, with Scotland almost levelling at the other end when Hendry hit the bar.
Yet Schick’s astonishing finish in the 52nd minute crushed hopes of a Scottish revival.