21st July 2018, Santander: It was a huge day at the EuroHockey U18 Championships as Spain were crowned EuroHockey Champions! Germany secured a tight 1-0 win over Belgium to take bronze. In addition, the relegation Pool C was settled with England and Ireland finishing a respective 5th and 6th to stay in the Championship division.
Spain v The Netherlands 2-1
The Netherlands started stronger as they attacked Spain’s circle within minutes of the starting whistle. A second attack minutes later led to the first goal of the game as VAN DE VENNE converted, 1-0. Much to the delight of the large Spanish crowd LACALLE made it 1-1 after 20 minutes, capitalising on a rare Dutch defensive error. VAN EIJCK had a chance in the 50th minute to go ahead for the Dutch but his effort was swiftly dispatched by the Spanish defence.
With a man down (yellow card) the Dutch struggled to contain the attacking Spanish. A brilliant cross from FORTUÑO in the 54th minute looked like it might be the winner but it just went wide of the post. Spain earned a pc in the last minute. The ball crossed the line but deemed not legally by the umpire as another pc was awarded. ABAJO struck it into the back of the goal in the 60th minute, low and hard flick to the left of the keeper, who had no chance of saving it. As the clock ticked down the Spain boys contained the Dutch and the whistle went with them winning the game 2-1.
Belgium v Germany 0-1
Germany overcame Belgium in a very tight 1-0 win over Belgium. SIEGBURG, spun and flicked the ball into the net in the 38th minute. Germany defended well and held Belgium to a 1-0 win, in spite of some excellent attacking from Belgium.
Earlier in the day the Pool C, relegation games took place:Pool C:
France v Poland 6-2
The first boys game of the day was between France and Poland. Both teams needed a win to avoid relegation. France opened the score in the first quarter, which they dominated. NOWAKOWSKI scored the equalizer for Poland in the 20th minute. France responded in the same minute to take the lead via their captain. France added one just before halftime to get a 2 goals advantage. The French team had a lot of chances and Poland was proceeding with counters. A great individual action from CLEMENT made it 4-1 for France. France needed to score more goals to secure their spot in the A division and took their goalkeeper off with 8 minutes left on the clock. They were awarded a penalty stroke, converted by their captain. Poland pulled one back in the same minute to make it 5-2. France put their goalkeeper back on the pitch and CLEMENT scored his 5th goal of the afternoon.
England v Ireland 0-1
In an extraordinary display of discipline and defending, Ireland held England to a 0-1 win to secure their place in the next Championship division. Ireland went ahead in the 9th minute, KIDD converting a corner.
For the following 51 minutes, they absorbed the pressure as England worked hard to get on the scoresheet. A series of penalty corners in the 3rd and 4th quarters saw Irish keeper LAWLESS (who came on in the 31st minute) seeing more of the ball than he would have liked! A superb save in the 65th minute where he just about got his toe to the ball was probably England’s best chance to equal the game.
However, they held on for the 1-0 win and a 6th place finish which pushes the French into 7th place and along with Poland they are relegated to the Championship II division.
Final Ranking Pool C:
|Rank||Team||Played||Wins||Draws||Losses||Goals For||Goals Against||Goal D||Points|
- The Netherlands
- France (relegated)
- Poland (relegated)
Best Player: Brent van BIJNEN (The Netherlands)
Best Goalkeeper: Anton BRINCKMAN (Germany)
Top Scorer: Timothée CLÉMENT (France)