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Euro 2016: Turkey's 2-0 victory over the Czech Republic puts Northern Ireland in the top 16

Published 21/06/2016

Czech Republic's Tomas Necid, left, and Turkey's Hakan Balta, right, challenge for the ball during the Euro 2016 Group D soccer match between the Czech Republic and Turkey at the Bollaert stadium in Lens, France, Tuesday, June 21, 2016. (AP Photo/Darko Vojinovic)
Czech Republic's Tomas Necid, left, and Turkey's Hakan Balta, right, challenge for the ball during the Euro 2016 Group D soccer match between the Czech Republic and Turkey at the Bollaert stadium in Lens, France, Tuesday, June 21, 2016. (AP Photo/Darko Vojinovic)
Turkey's Ismail Koybasi clears a ball during the Euro 2016 Group D soccer match between the Czech Republic and Turkey at the Bollaert stadium in Lens, France, Tuesday, June 21, 2016. (AP Photo/Geert Vanden Wijngaert)
Turkey's Mehmet Topal, front, plays the ball during the Euro 2016 Group D soccer match between the Czech Republic and Turkey at the Bollaert stadium in Lens, France, Tuesday, June 21, 2016. (AP Photo/Darko Vojinovic)
Czech Republic's Pavel Kaderabek, 2nd left, fails to score against Turkey goalkeeper Volkan Babacan during the Euro 2016 Group D soccer match between the Czech Republic and Turkey at the Bollaert stadium in Lens, France, Tuesday, June 21, 2016. (AP Photo/Darko Vojinovic)
Turkey's Gokhan Gonul sits on the pitch after suffering a cut during the Euro 2016 Group D soccer match between the Czech Republic and Turkey at the Bollaert stadium in Lens, France, Tuesday, June 21, 2016. (AP Photo/Geert Vanden Wijngaert)
Czech Republic's Pavel Kaderabek, 2nd left, lies on the pitch after he failed to score against Turkey goalkeeper Volkan Babacan during the Euro 2016 Group D soccer match between the Czech Republic and Turkey at the Bollaert stadium in Lens, France, Tuesday, June 21, 2016. (AP Photo/Darko Vojinovic)
Czech Republic's Roman Hubnik, left, and Turkey's Burak Yilmaz, right, go for a header during the Euro 2016 Group D soccer match between the Czech Republic and Turkey at the Bollaert stadium in Lens, France, Tuesday, June 21, 2016. (AP Photo/Darko Vojinovic)
Turkey goalkeeper Volkan Babacan, center, jumps for the ball during the Euro 2016 Group D soccer match between the Czech Republic and Turkey at the Bollaert stadium in Lens, France, Tuesday, June 21, 2016. (AP Photo/Darko Vojinovic)
Turkey's Gokhan Gonul leaves the pitch after suffering a cut during the Euro 2016 Group D soccer match between the Czech Republic and Turkey at the Bollaert stadium in Lens, France, Tuesday, June 21, 2016. (AP Photo/Geert Vanden Wijngaert)
Turkey's Gokhan Gonul, lies on the pitch bleeding during the Euro 2016 Group D soccer match between the Czech Republic and Turkey at the Bollaert stadium in Lens, France, Tuesday, June 21, 2016. In the background is Czech Republic's Tomas Sivok. (AP Photo/Darko Vojinovic)
Turkey's Ozan Tufan, front, scores his side's second goal during the Euro 2016 Group D soccer match between the Czech Republic and Turkey at the Bollaert stadium in Lens, France, Tuesday, June 21, 2016. (AP Photo/Darko Vojinovic)
Turkey's Ozan Tufan celebrates after scoring his side's second goal during the Euro 2016 Group D soccer match between the Czech Republic and Turkey at the Bollaert stadium in Lens, France, Tuesday, June 21, 2016. (AP Photo/Geert Vanden Wijngaert)
Turkey's Ozan Tufan, top left, celebrates after scoring his side's second goal during the Euro 2016 Group D soccer match between the Czech Republic and Turkey at the Bollaert stadium in Lens, France, Tuesday, June 21, 2016. (AP Photo/Geert Vanden Wijngaert)
Turkey's Ozan Tufan, front, scores his side's second goal during the Euro 2016 Group D soccer match between the Czech Republic and Turkey at the Bollaert stadium in Lens, France, Tuesday, June 21, 2016. (AP Photo/Darko Vojinovic)
Turkey supporters light firework after their team scored the second goal during the Euro 2016 Group D soccer match between the Czech Republic and Turkey at the Bollaert stadium in Lens, France, Tuesday, June 21, 2016. (AP Photo/Frank Augstein)
Turkish fans celebrate after scoring their second goal during the Euro 2016 Group D soccer match between the Czech Republic and Turkey at the Bollaert stadium in Lens, France, Tuesday, June 21, 2016. (AP Photo/Geert Vanden Wijngaert)
Czech Republic goalkeeper Petr Cech, rear, gestures after Turkey's Ozan Tufan scored his side's second goal during the Euro 2016 Group D soccer match between the Czech Republic and Turkey at the Bollaert stadium in Lens, France, Tuesday, June 21, 2016. (AP Photo/Darko Vojinovic)
Turkey's Burak Yilmaz, second from right, celebrates after his team scored their second goal during the Euro 2016 Group D soccer match between the Czech Republic and Turkey at the Bollaert stadium in Lens, France, Tuesday, June 21, 2016. (AP Photo/Frank Augstein)
Turkey goalkeeper Volkan Babacan walks towards a burning flare during the Euro 2016 Group D soccer match between the Czech Republic and Turkey at the Bollaert stadium in Lens, France, Tuesday, June 21, 2016. (AP Photo/Darko Vojinovic)
Turkey goalkeeper Volkan Babacan carries away a burning flare during the Euro 2016 Group D soccer match between the Czech Republic and Turkey at the Bollaert stadium in Lens, France, Tuesday, June 21, 2016. (AP Photo/Darko Vojinovic)
Czech players leave the pitch after losing 0-2 during the Euro 2016 Group D soccer match between the Czech Republic and Turkey at the Bollaert stadium in Lens, France, Tuesday, June 21, 2016. (AP Photo/Frank Augstein)
Turkish players celebrate after winning 2-0 during the Euro 2016 Group D soccer match between the Czech Republic and Turkey at the Bollaert stadium in Lens, France, Tuesday, June 21, 2016. (AP Photo/Geert Vanden Wijngaert)

Burak Yilmaz and Ozan Tufan fired Turkey to a 2-0 win over the Czech Republic that sent Northern Ireland into the last 16 of Euro 2016.

Turkey's first points of the tournament, in their final Group D game in Lens, also gave them hope of progressing to the next stage as one of the best third-placed teams.

After defeats by Croatia and Spain, Turkey knew they would have to win by at least two goals to keep their tournament alive. They achieved that with strikes in each half from Yilmaz and Tufan.

Had they scored four they would have gone through immediately but, while they must now wait on other results, Northern Ireland can prepare for the knockout stages.

The Czechs, meanwhile, slipped to the bottom of the group and will head home.

Turkey's victory was deserved but hard-earned. The Czechs made a positive start but were caught on the break after just 10 minutes as Turkey seized a loose ball.

Emre Mor, the highly-rated 18-year-old winger snapped up by Borussia Dortmund earlier this month, raced away down the touchline and clipped the ball into the box. Yilmaz got himself ahead of Tomas Sivok and neatly turned the ball in at the near post.

The Czechs were not ruffled and went close to a quick equaliser when Sivok headed against the post from a corner.

Further Czech chances came as Pavel Kaderabek got behind the defence only to shoot at goalkeeper Volkan Babacan's feet and Tomas Necid flicked another opportunistic volley wide.

At the other end Mor, seizing his chance to impress on his first start of the tournament, flashed a shot wide from a tight angle.

The Czechs again went close to an equaliser before the interval as Necid headed across goal following a poor Turkish clearance but Kaderabek was unable to turn in at the far post. Jaroslav Plasil also tried his luck with a shot from outside the area but Babacan saved comfortably.

There was a hold-up early in the second half after three players were hurt in an accidental clash of heads in the Turkey area. Turkey's Gokhan Gonul was the worst affected following the collision involving Sivok and David Pavelka, requiring treatment for a nasty cut close to the eye.

When play resumed Turkey were the next to threaten as Mor shot over but Babacan was soon in action too when Vladimir Darida tested him.

Turkey doubled their lead midway through the second half after the Czechs failed to deal with a free-kick lobbed into the area by Selcuk Inan. The ball found its way to the feet of Mehmet Topal and he laid off for Tufan to smash a shot into the top corner.

As has been common throughout the tournament, flares were set off by fans amid the Turkish celebrations.

The Czechs tried to fight back with Darida twice forcing Babacan to save.

Turkey continued to chase more goals and Olcay Sahan seized on poor defending to fire wide late on.

Online Editors

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