Joshua Kimmich’s well-taken equaliser earned Germany a 1-1 draw with Italy in their Nations League opener on Saturday, ensuring his side remain unbeaten under coach Hansi Flick.
Looking to get over their disappointment at failing to qualify for the World Cup for the second successive tournament, Italy named an experimental side for their League A, Group Three match in Bologna, and gave Flick’s team a real test.
AS Roma’s Lorenzo Pellegrini edged the hosts in front 20 minutes from fulltime as Italy looked primed to secure only their second win in their last six games, but Kimmich pounced three minutes later to earn his side a point.
Mane nets hat-trick as Senegal begin Cup of Nations defence
Best of Express Premium
Sadio Mane scored a hat-trick as Senegal made a successful start to the defence of their Africa Cup of Nations crown with a 3-1 home victory over Benin on Saturday in their first qualifier for the next finals in 2023.
Mane, whose club future is in doubt after he suggested to reporters on Friday he might be leaving Liverpool, netted two penalties in his hat-trick as Senegal made light work of their visitors in the Group L encounter.
Mali thrashed Congo 4-0 in Bamako in a winning debut for new coach Eric Sekou Chelle while Algeria, Gambia and Mauritania were also winners on a busy Saturday programme of qualifiers for the next finals in the Ivory Coast.
Szoboszlai penalty earns Hungary first win over England in 60 years
A second-half penalty from Dominik Szoboszlai earned Hungary a shock 1-0 win over England in the Nations League on Saturday – their first victory against Gareth Southgate’s side in 60 years.
Looking to get their preparations for the Qatar World Cup, which begins later this year, up and running, England were surprisingly second best from the off in Budapest, and were fortunate to go into the break all square.
The hosts kept coming and made their pressure count as Szoboszlai converted from the penalty spot in the 66th minute after Zsolt Nagy was fouled by Chelsea defender Reece James – a decision which incensed the England players.
England pressed as they looked for a leveller, but they could not create that killer chance as their Nations League campaign got off to a disappointing start.
England players booed when taking the knee in Hungary
England players were booed by Hungary supporters when taking the knee in protest against racial injustice ahead of their Nations League clash in Budapest on Saturday.
Hungary forced to play game behind closed doors due to fan racism, let in 30,000+ under 14s, who boo England players taking the knee pic.twitter.com/jt652RE310
— Sam Cunningham (@samcunningham) June 4, 2022
Hungary were hosting England in what was officially a behind-closed-doors match after being disciplined by both FIFA and UEFA for repeated racist behaviour, including during England’s previous visit to Budapest last September.
However, the Hungarian FA said last month children could attend the match at the Puskas Arena. Under Article 73 of UEFA’s disciplinary regulations, children up to the age of 14 from schools and/or football academies can be invited to a game free of charge, provided they are accompanied by an adult.
It meant around 40,000 were able to attend on Saturday, mostly children, and after the national anthems, the England players took a knee prior to kick off, with boos audible from the stands.