French storm subsides after half, Belgium opens European Championship with disappointing 1-1

NOS FootballAmended

Now that all countries have come into action at the European Championship, the French football players have made the most impression with the whirlwind that blew Italy off the field for half. In the end, the damage was not too bad (5-1).

At halftime it was already 5-0 for France, which was estimated to be equal to the Netherlands by the bookmakers prior to the tournament, after the favorites England and Germany.


Marie-Antoinette Katoto celebrates her goal against Italy

With powerful, fast and energetic play, Italy was completely destroyed in group D. Grace Geyoro can call herself the top scorer of the tournament after a hat trick. Marie-Antoinette Katoto and Delphine Cascarino scored the other goals.

For the older readers: Cascarino is not related to Tony Cascarino, the Irish striker who played against the Orange in several major tournaments and earned his living in France for years.

The cool moment was a clumsy kick from Italian captain Sara Gama, who was much too late to the ball and hit her opponent full. However, VAR was merciful and recognized the clumsiness of the action, after which the red card was reversed to yellow. She was even allowed to cheer one more time after that, when Martina Piemonte saved the credit for her country.

Busy day Van Boekel

Belgium and Iceland drew 1-1 in the other game in this group. Although it was a little elevating match, Dutch video referee Pol van Boekel was busy with the first game in Group D.

European Championship: view the summary of Belgium – Iceland

The VAR on duty intervened in the discussion about two questionable penalties and also had to come into play to assess whether Iceland’s opening goal was not offside.

The first half could be summarized in one phase. An Icelandic misfire came against a Belgian arm, after which Van Boekel called referee Tess Olofsson to the side. He gave a penalty, which was shot very weakly in the arms of goalkeeper Nicky Evrard.

Thorvaldsdottir makes up for her miss

Evrard seemed to be on his way to become the hero of the evening, but fumbled badly on a header from Berglind Thorvaldsdottir. She was just short of offside when she made up for her missed penalty with the opening goal.


Nicky Evrard can’t stop Karolina Vilhjalmsdottir’s header

Van Boekel also looked at the images when Elena Dhont went to the ground very easily, but saw no need to intervene in Olofsson’s decision to give the FC Twente player a penalty. Justine Vanhaevermaet remained extremely calm from eleven meters.


After a promising European Championship debut five years ago, the big question was where the Belgian women would stand now, but perhaps the nerves were also playing tricks on them. For example, all-time top scorer Tessa Wullaert was unable to distinguish himself.

Where the Fortuna Sittard men’s team stunted this summer by attracting the Turkish star Burak Yilmaz, the Limburg women will have Wullaert next season. In the coming group matches against Italy and the top country France, she will have the chance to distinguish herself internationally.