Germany, Poland play to first 0-0 of EURO 2016; Ukraine eliminated

Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images
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It couldn’t last forever, EURO 2016’s streak of 15 games to begin the tournament without a 0-0 draw. It just wasn’t supposed to be this team, the reigning world champion Germans, who let us down and snuffed out those good-feeling, goal-scoring times.

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Not that Joachim Loew’s champs will be all that bothered, seeing as how Thursday’s scoreless draw with Poland keeps Die Mannschaft level on points with their eastern neighbors for the top spot in Group C, with only a hugely overmatched Northern Ireland side left to play.

Thursday’s proceedings could have easily gone against Germany, though, as Arkadiusz Milik, the scorer of Poland’s only goal in a 1-0 victory over the Northern Irish over the weekend, saw the game’s best chance come and go with an embarrassing whiff from right on the penalty spot.

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Despite holding 69 percent of the game’s possession, Germany failed to create much with all that time on the ball — just three of 16 shots on target, with Lukasz Fabianski making comfortable saves on every occasion.

Germany sit atop Group C, based on goal differential (+2 to +1), with Ukraine still to play in their group stage finale. Any one of Germany, Poland and Northern Ireland could win the group, with Thursday’s snoozer in Paris resulting in Ukraine the first side mathematically eliminated from EURO 2016.