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Euro 2024 Awards for Matchday One – Guler Golazo, Magic Musiala

After the opening round of Euro 2024 fixtures we’ve decided to celebrate the best – and worst – of the tournament so far.

Here are our Euro 2024 awards for Matchday One.

Best Moment

Christian Eriksen’s collapse at the European Championship in 2021 was one of the most harrowing scenes witnessed in football. The Dane’s cardiac arrest in his nation’s opener against Finland was traumatic and his return to health – and later football – has delighted fans of the sport.

1,100 days on from his collapse, Eriksen returned to the European Championship stage. Fittingly, in Denmark’s meeting with Slovenia, he scored the opener. It is a brilliant story for a player who survived a terrifying ordeal to return to the top level of the game. Eriksen’s opener was not enough to earn Denmark the win in an eventual 1-1 draw, but it is a goal that was celebrated by Danes and neutrals alike.

Best Player

Germany got their campaign off to a dream start as Julian Nagelsmann’s side thrashed Scotland in Munich. The host nation sent a statement of their intent with a 5-1 win, a performance that saw Jamal Musiala torment the Tartan Army. The twinkle-toed talent terrified Scotland’s backline time and time again, leaving a succession blue shirts in his wake.

He scored the second with a thumping finish, completed five dribbles, won nine duels, and recorded a 100% pass accuracy (32/32) in a complete creative performance. Musiala was a joy to watch on opening night and will be key to Germany’s chances on home soil this summer.

Best Goal

Arda Guler has been dubbed the ‘Turkish Messi’ since his exciting emergence. It’s a heavy nickname to carry, but more goals of this calibre and it will certainly feel fitting. After ending the season in spectacular form for Real Madrid with five goals in five La Liga games, the 19-year-old opened Euro 2024 with a Golazo against Georgia.

Remember the name.

An honourable mention for Romania captain Nicolae Stanciu, who must have thought he had this award wrapped up after blasting his team into the lead against Ukraine. Stanciu set Romania on route to just their second-ever win at a European Championship with a stunning opener.

Stanciu by name, stanchion by nature.

Best Game

Forget the big boys. Turkey vs Georgia was what the European Championship is really about.

The lowest-ranked match-up of the tournament so far delivered an absolute classic, with the eruptions from the heavens – and conflicting supporters in the stands – spilling over onto the pitch.

It was chaotic, open, and deafening inside the Westfalenstadion, a contest with four goals, 36 shots, and three strikes that hit the woodwork.

Mert Muldur and Arda Guler scored stunning goals for Turkey, Georges Mikautadze netted Georgia’s first at a major tournament, and Kerem Akturkoglu raced away to seal the win with Georgian goalkeeper Giorgi Mamardashvili thrown upfront for a late set-piece.

Bonkers, breathless, brilliant.

Best Stat

A bad day at the office for Romelu Lukaku and Belgium.

Best Tweet

Amadou Onana’s English accent coming straight from Love Island.

Read – Euro 2024 – Team of the Week from the opening round of fixtures

See more – Five of the best European Championship teams of all time

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