Greece knocked out of Euro Cup after defeat against Russia

June 15th, 2008 - 4:54 am ICT by IANS  

Salzburg (Austria), June 15 (DPA) Defending champions Greece were Saturday knocked out of Euro 2008 after being beaten 1-0 by Russia in a Group D match played in Salzburg. The Greeks have no point from their two games, but as Russia and Sweden - who earlier in the day lost 2-1 to Spain - have three points each and are playing against each other in their final game, Greece can no longer finish second behind Spain, who are assured of finishing first.

The only goal of the game came in the 33rd minute after goalkeeper Antonis Nikopolidis seemingly had a rush of blood to his head and chased after a ball that seemed to provide no danger.

Russia’s Sergey Semak beat the keeper to the ball though and his overhead cross found an unmarked Konstantin Zyryanov, who simply stuck out his foot and pushed the ball over the line.

Although Greece pushed men forward in search of the equalizer that would have kept them in the competition, they could not break through the Russian defence.

Sweden and Russia face each other in their final Group game Wednesday, with Russia needing a win to finish second in the group, while Sweden will go through with a draw.

Greece take on Spain in a match that is only of statistical value.

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