Goalkeeper: Volkan Babacan
Let’s be honest, Turkey should not have won their game 2-0 over the Czech Republic. The Czechs had 12 attempts but couldn’t score from any of them. Why? Volkan Babacan! Volkan Babacan made 5 saves against the Czech Repbulic and was constantly in the way of their hopes of scoring a goal and reaching the knockout stage. Turkey were excellent against the Czech Republic, but the Czechs could have easily gotten back into the game if Babacan had not been so reliable at the back. The İstanbul Başakşehir goalkeeper was Turkey’s standout player in an excellent 2-0 victory that could have been enough to send them through if Ireland hadn’t gotten a last minute goal. Rating 9/10.
Right Back: Nathaniel Clyne
Nathaniel Clyne deserved his chance to play at Euro 2016. Arguably he is the best fulback that England have in their squad and he proved that to be true on Monday night with a brilliant performance against Slovakia. Nathaniel Clyne was England’s best source for attacks. From an England perspective, it’s sad that their best attacking player was once again a fulback, but it’s no fault of Nathaniel Clyne! He was excellent against Slovakia, creating a stunning seven chances, sending in six crosses, completing 95% of his passes and taking 2 shots. The Southampton defender was excellent against Slovakia and if anyone was going to provide an attack or score a goal for England on Monday night, it was him. Rating 8/10.
Centre Back: Martin Skrtel
Martin Skrtel was excellent on Monday night against England, handling Jamie Vardy and co with near perfection and stopping Dele Alli from scoring with a near impossible clearance off the line. Skrtel made 2 tackles, 5 clearances, 4 blocks and completed 86% of his passes to help Slovakia keep a clean sheet and send them through to the Round of 16. England completely dominated Slovakia on Monday night, but with Skrtel and Kozacik in that back line, England had a tough time putting the ball in the back of the net. Rating 8.5/10.
Left Back: Neil Taylor
Neil Taylor didn’t have a lot to defend against on Monday night but when he did he was superb and not only that, he scored his first ever international goal to give Wales a 2-0 lead. Taylor’s goal completely killed Russia off and ended any sort of momentum they had in the match, allowing Wales to go on and dominate the rest of the game as Russia barely saw any of the ball. Taylor also had 3 shots, 2 of which were on target and made 3 interceptions, 5 blocks and 4 clearances in the match. The Swansea left-back was excellent on Monday and deservedly scored his first ever international goal. Rating 9/10.
Centre Midfield: Joe Allen
Joe Allen was exceptional on Monday night, controlling the midfield and bossing the game. His assist on Ramsey’s goal was fantastic and he continued to make amazing passes all night long after that. The central midfielder created 2 chances, completed 85% of his passes, made 4 interceptions and completed 3 dribbles to help control the game with midfield partners Joe Ledley and Aaron Ramsey. Allen was superb on Monday night and was one of Wales’ key players in their historic win that sent them top of Group B. Rating 9/10.
Centre Midfield: Ledian Memushaj
One of Albania’s key performers in their historic win against Romania. Memushaj was everywhere on Sunday night. He had three shots, two of which were on target, had 72 touches, won 2 dribbles, 3 tackles and created 5 chances. He was dominant in the game against Romania and proved to be one of Albania’s most key players as they won their first ever match in an international tournament. It wasn’t enough to send Albania through to the next round, but it was enough to earn Memushaj an appearance on the Team of the Week. Rating 8.5/10.
Right Attacking Midfield: Balasz Dzsudzsak
Balasz Dzsudzsak gave Hungary the lead over Portugal on two separate occasions only to have it squandered by the brilliance of Cristiano Ronaldo. Dzsudzsak was almost equally as good as the Real Madrid forward on the day as he scored two crucial goals to allow Hungary to finish top of Group F. The Hungarian captain only had three shots and scored from two of them. Dzsudzsak also sent in five crosses and helped out in defense, making 4 clearances and blocking 4 shots. Balasz Dzsudzsak was brilliant against Portugal and led the charge to send Hungary through as group F winners. Rating 9.5/10.
Left Attacking Midfield: Aaron Ramsey
Aaron Ramsey was Wales’ standout player in their amazing 3-0 win over a horrible Russia. He was so inventive all game long, making beautiful forward passes and constantly creating chances for his teammates to score. Ramsey scored an early goal to give his team the lead with a perfect chip shot finish after a pass from Joe Allen. Then he dominated the rest of the game, creating 6 chances including a glorious assist for Bale’s goal. Ramsey had 99 touches on the night, 4 shots and completed 4 dribbles. He was absolutely fantastic on Monday night and without him Wales would have been nowhere near as dominant. Rating 10/10.
Right Wing: Gareth Bale
Gareth Bale was another fantastic performer in Wales’ 3-0 win over Russia. Bale has been proving to be one of the tournament’s standout players and unlike a few other big names like Lewandowski, Kane and Alaba, Bale has been absolutely on top of his game and has been the key man for his country as Wales have managed to top Group B. Bale put in another fantastic performance against Russia on Monday night, taking 8 shots, 6 of which were on target and one of which was converted beautifully for a goal. He also completed 87% of his passes, had 62 touches and won a stunning 8 dribbles. Bale was superb in Wales’ 3-0 win and capped off a brilliant string of matches that helped his team top Group B. Rating 10/10.
Centre Forward: Cristiano Ronaldo
Finally Cristiano Ronaldo showed his class and capabilities with a magnificent performance against Hungary. Portugal went a goal down on three different occasions in the match against Hungary and every single time, Ronaldo stepped up and got Portugal back in the match. He assisted Nani for the first goal with a perfect and imaginative pass, scored the second with a brilliant and cheeky finish and headed home the third and final goal of the match to send Portugal through to the knockout round. Ronaldo gave everything to win that match for Portugal and as a result Portugal qualified for the Round of 16. Rating 10/10.
Left Wing: Ivan Perisic
If one player won Croatia their match against Spain, it was Ivan Perisic. The Inter Milan midfielder was brilliant against Spain, setting up Croatia’s equalizing goal just before the half time break and then scoring a stuttering goal to win his nation the game late on and cause a huge upset. The wing wizard also won three aerial duels, made two tackles, won four dribbles and of course was Croatia’s key man every step of the way in attack. It was a wonderful performance for Ivan Perisic and he is the main reason why his nation were able to top Group D. Rating 9.5/10.
Substitutes: Michael McGovern, Kari Arnason, Mehmet Topal, Robbie Brady, Kevin de Bruyne, Emre Mor, Nikola Kalinic
Player of the Week: Aaron Ramsey
Aaron Ramsey was Wales’ standout player in their amazing 3-0 win over a horrible Russia. He was so inventive all game long, making beautiful forward passes and constantly creating chances for his teammates to score. His pass for Bale’s second goal was sublime and one of the best passes ever in an international tournament. If you haven’t seen it, watch the video below. Ramsey was unbelievably good and his new hairdo may just be finally paying off.
Manager of the Week: Chris Coleman
With the stakes as high as ever, Chris Coleman set up his team perfectly once again to defeat Russia 3-0 and finish top of Group B. Every Wales player was on top of their game on Monday night and that is in large part thanks to Chris Coleman’s tactical awareness. The 3-5-2 formation continues to prove a hit and continues to get the best out of Wales’ best players, Ramsey and Bale. The 3-5-2 allowed the two fulbacks, Gunter and Taylor to get forward all game long, but with Bale and Ramsey also to deal with on the wings, it was impossible for Russia to cope with the constant presence of the players on the wings. Allen and Ledley controlled the midfield and Bale, Ramsey and Taylor were clinical in their finishing. It was a brilliant performance by Wales and now they arguably have the best draw of the Round of 16 as they only have minnows Northern Ireland to face.
Best Game: Hungary 3-3 Portugal
Best Moment: Ireland’s last minute goal to win their first match at Euro 2016 and go through in third place in Group E. Wes Hoolahan crossed the ball perfectly on to the on rushing Robbie Brady who headed it in to the back of the net. The stadium was electrified for the rest of the match and the scenes after the game were wonderful to see.
So there it is! The last team of the week of the Euro 2016 Group Stages! When we meet again, it’ll be the Round of 16. Stay tuned!
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