Euro 2024: Belgium qualify for last 16 with nerve-wracking draw against Ukraine

Belgium have qualified for the last 16 at Euro 2024 with a 0-0 draw against Ukraine. The point means the Red Devils finish second in their group with four points and will face France on Monday.

Belgium could have had a place on the "easier" side of the draw for the knockout stages of the competition: with a group win, they would have avoided France, Germany, Portugal and Spain. In the other match in Group E, Romania drew with Slovakia, leaving all four teams on four points. Ukraine are knocked out while the other three teams progress.

Belgium will now be seeking revenge for the semi-final defeat to France at the 2018 World Cup .

The Red Devils played out a particularly mediocre first half in Stuttgart, creating far fewer scoring opportunities than in their first two matches, a 1-0 defeat to Slovakia and a 2-0 win over Romania. At one point, it appeared that captain Kevin De Bruyne was hindered by a laser pointed into his eyes from the crowd.

Although Belgium had more control after the break, they had to endure some nerve-wracking moments, including a dangerous corner kick that was only just cleared off the line by goalkeeper Koen Casteels. The Belgians left the pitch to whistles from supporters after a disappointing performance and will have to do a lot better against France.

Belgium's players after the Euro 2024 game against Ukraine in Stuttgart, 26 June 2024 © BELGA PHOTO BRUNO FAHY

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