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Netherlands to meet Italy in U17 European Championships decider

Catch up on all of today’s semi-final action.

A general view of Tallaght Stadium.
A general view of Tallaght Stadium.
Image: Oisin Keniry/INPHO

ITALY WILL LOOK to wrestle the title from reigning U17 European champions the Netherlands when the pair meet in Sunday’s final in Tallaght Stadium.

The two sides came through their respective semi-finals this evening, with the fifth and sixth place play-offs also part of today’s U17 European Championship schedule.

The Netherlands left it late this afternoon and they had Mohamed Taabouni to thank after his 89th minute winner against Spain booked their place in Sunday’s decider.

The Spaniards were held scoreless for the first time in this year’s tournament and the 2017 champions were dumped out at the UCD Bowl in dramatic fashion.

The Dutch now meet Italy who came from behind to beat France in Tallaght.

Monaco underage star Enzo Millot scored the opener to set Les Bleus on track for a first final appearance since 2015. 

Sebastiano Esposito scored on the stroke of half-time to bring the sides level and Iyenoma Udogie scored with nine minutes remaining to seal victory for the Italians.

Seamas Keogh and Chris Kalulika Chris Kalulika (left) was on target for Belgium this afternoon. Source: Ryan Byrne/INPHO

In the day’s early kick-off, Hungary and Belgium battled it out in the fifth and sixth place play-offs.

Belgium, with whom Colin O’Brien’s Ireland drew with during the group stage, took the lead four minutes before the hour mark when Anderlecht’s Chris Kalulika tapped in from close range. 

Deserving of the lead after hitting the woodwork twice in the opening 45 minutes of play, they then found themselves back on level terms just five minutes later.

Gyorg Komaromi clawed back the deficit for the Hungarians with a header to send the game to penalties.

Akos Zuigeber scored the winning goal for Hungary to clinch a 5-4 shootout victory and also book their place in the U17 World Cup in October – their first appearance in the competition since 1985.

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Source: The42 Rugby Weekly/SoundCloud

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