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You are here: Football Euros Euro 2016 Group E: Belgium, Ireland register late wins as well

Euro 2016 Group E: Belgium, Ireland register late wins as well

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The theme of late goals in the European Championships continued till the very end of the group stages with three of the four matches on Wednesday decided by late strikes. While it is hard to beat Iceland's late late winner against Austria in Group F, Group E did provide its own version of excitement on Wednesday evening with the Republic of Ireland joining their British neighbours in the last 16 of the competition courtesy of a Robbie Brady goal in the 85th minute which condemned Antonio Conte's Italy to a 1-0 defeat.

Not to be outdone, Belgium booked their place in the last 16 too, with the heavily tattooed and mohawk wearing Radja Nainggolan scoring an absolute scorcher from 25 yards to beat Sweden 1-0 and thus bring an end to Zlatan Ibrahimovic's sterling international career.

Both matches were short on goals, but not on excitement with Manchester City playmaker Kevin de Bruyne in spectacular form for Belgium, but let down by the qualify of marksmen in front of him.

The win for Belgium sets up a last 16 showdown with Hungary, who were very impressive in their 3-3 draw with Portugal earlier in the day. That match will take place at the Stadium Municipal on Sunday.

Ireland meanwhile came through a bruising encounter, littered with fouls and aggressive tackles, and will in all likelihood look to play a similar game when they take on France in the ultimate grudge match in Lyon on Sunday.

Italy meanwhile won't be too disappointed after their second string side went down to Ireland, and were already guaranteed of topping this group with Spain lying in wait at the Stade de France on Monday, 27 June.

Final Score:

Republic of Ireland 1-0 Italy (Brady 85')

Belgium 1-0 Sweden (Nainggolan 84')