Vicario, Italy narrowly escape elimination in Euro 2024

Tottenham's goalkeeper Guglielmo Vicario tasted glory on Monday as his country found a late goal against Croatia to move on to the knockout rounds of the competition.
Croatia v Italy - EURO 2024
Croatia v Italy - EURO 2024 / Anadolu/GettyImages

It was a dramatic day for European football as matchday three of the Euro group stage kicked off with Spain vs Albania and Italy vs Croatia.

Spain's 1-0 win saw them cruise through to the knockout rounds at the top of Group A, solidifying their place as the only country to win all three of their group stage matches thus far.

In Italy's match, however, the stakes were much higher, and the game proved to be one that fans on both ends of the pitch will remember for a long time.

The game was scoreless through the first half, a result that favored Italy with their two point lead on Croatia keeping them at second place in the group.

All seemed fine for Vicario and co., however, until former Spurs player Luka Modric bagged a 55th minute goal to give Croatia the lead, both in the game and in the table.

If the scoreline held, the reigning champions of Europe's largest international football tournament would likely have fallen without ever seeing the Round of 16, with a tough fight to win in the third place table to get back into the competition.

However, just as they did back in 2020, the Italians stunned every spectator when Lazio midfielder Mattia Zaccagni found the back of the net eight minutes into stoppage time.

The crowd erupted, and the whistle blew shortly after.

It was a somber day for Luka Modric, who saw his side knocked out of the competition despite his effort, which earned him the Man of the Match award.

It's a fitting end to what will likely be the footballing veteran's last major tournament in the red and white of his home country.

Nevertheless, it was certainly a day of rejoice for Vicario, as the Italians march on to face their next opponent