International friendly roundup: Belgium, France play emotional matches; Germany makes history vs Italy

Photo by Carlos Rodrigues/Getty Images
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A pair of poignant spectacles paced Tuesday’s international friendlies, though the remaining games brought plenty of on-field electricity, too.

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Portugal 2-1 Belgium

Nani and Cristiano Ronaldo scored first half goals, but that was far from the minds of many as Belgium hosted its first match since last week’s disturbing terrorist attacks. Romelu Lukaku pulled one back for the Red Devils in the 62nd minute.

LEIRIA, PORTUGAL - MARCH 29: Both team take one minute of silence in memorial of the Bruxelles victims during the match between Portugal and BelgiumFriendly International at Estadio Municipal de Leiria on March 29, 2016 in Lisbon, Portugal. (Photo by Carlos Rodrigues/Getty Images)
(Photo by Carlos Rodrigues/Getty Images)

France 4-2 Russia

The last time Stade de France hosted a game, the air was bombarded by the sound of explosions in the distance as ISIL attacked the French capital.

The French team returned home Tuesday, and recorded a memorable win thanks to goals by N'Golo Kante, Andre Gignac, Dimitri Payet and Kingsley Coman (Andrei Kokorin and Yuri Zhirkov scored for the visitors). The goals were birthday tallies for Premier League stars Kante and Payet.

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Payet’s goal was especially dynamic, something we’ve come to expect from the West Ham man.

Germany 4-1 Italy

Die Mannschaft made up for its come-from-ahead loss to England by beating the Italians for the first time in more than two decades. Toni Kroos, Mario Gotze, Jonas Hector and Mesut Ozil all scored for Germany, while Stephen El Shaarawy scoring a gorgeous consolation goal late in the contest.

MUNICH, GERMANY - MARCH 29: Mario Gotze of Germany (L) celebrates after scoring the second goal during the international friendly match between Germany and Italy at Allianz Arena on March 29, 2016 in Munich, Germany. (Photo by Claudio Villa/Getty Images)
(Photo by Claudio Villa/Getty Images)

England 1-2 Netherlands

Jamie Vardy scored another goal for the Three Lions, but a Danny Rose handball put Vincent Janssen on the spot. The AZ Alkmaar striker converted his chance to make it 1-1 before assisting on Luciano Narsingh’s winner. England complained that Janssen had fouled Phil Jagielka in the build-up, to no avail.

Elsewhere
Greece 2-3 Iceland
Ireland 2-2 Slovakia
Austria 1-2 Turkey
Norway 2-0 Finland
Scotland 1-0 Denmark
Switzerland 0-2 Bosnia & Herzegovina
Sweden 1-1 Czech Republic
Georgia 1-1 Kazakhstan
Estonia 0-1 Serbia
Montenegro 0-0 Belarus
Gibraltar 0-5 Latvia
Luxembourg 0-2 Albania