Ukraine earned a much-deserved victory at Euro 2020 as they held on to beat tournament debutants North Macedonia in an entertaining encounter in Bucharest, Romania.

Ukraine felt hard done by after an impressive showing against group favourites – the Netherlands – in their opening game of Euro 2020. They came back from two goals down before ultimately losing 3-2 on Sunday.

However, Andriy Shevchenko’s side ended a run of six consecutive European Championship defeats. They remain in contention for qualification for the knockout stages from Group C.

Captain Andriy Yarmolenko opened the scoring for Ukraine after poor defending by North Macedonia from a corner. The Ukrainian slotted home the advantage in the 29th minute. The West Ham attacker then set up teammate Roman Yaremchuk, five minutes later to put the Ukrainians in the driver’s seat.

Leeds United’s Ezgjan Alioski pulled one back for the North Macedonians in the 57th minute. This was only after he scored from the follow up after his penalty was saved. North Macedonia looked much better in the second half, but they could not find an equaliser.

Ukraine could have made it a much more comfortable victory but goalkeeper Stole Dimitrievski saved Ruslan Malinovskiy’s penalty. This would have made sure of the win for the Ukrainians.

North Macedonia have been eliminated

North Macedonia are the first team to be eliminated from Euro 2020. This was confirmed when the Netherlands defeated Austria. They are guaranteed to finish bottom of the group.

Ukraine were one defeat away from recording the longest losing streak in the competition’s history. They were the first side to be eliminated at Euro 2016. They did not want history to repeat itself and inflicted that pain on North Macedonia instead.

Igor Angelovski’s side, the lowest-ranked at Euro 2020, played well in their two games. However, they just seemed to lack the quality that could help them get a result.

Ukraine meet Austria next. North Macedonia face the Netherlands in the final round of Group C games of Euro 2020. Both matches take place on Monday.

The winner between Austria and Ukraine will guarantee their place in the last 16.