The latest: UEFA investigates discrimination in Hungary

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Italy’s manager Roberto Mancini controls the ball during a team training session at the Acqua Acetosa training center in Rome, Saturday 19 June 2021, the day before the 2020 European Football Championship match between Italy and Wales. (AP Photo / Andrew Medichini)

AP

The latest about the European Football Championship:

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According to its own information, UEFA is investigating “potential discriminatory incidents” at two European Championship games in Hungary.

The governing body of European football says a “UEFA ethics and disciplinary inspector has been appointed” to conduct an investigation.

The investigation focuses on Hungary’s 3-0 defeat by Portugal on Tuesday and the 1-1 draw with France on Saturday. Both games were played in the Puskas Arena.

Budapest is the only Euro 2020 host city that allows full spectator numbers for games.

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Denmark goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel says the flood of support after Christian Eriksen’s collapse at the European Championship has shown “why we love this game so much”.

Schmeichel says, “Seeing that football can unite a country as it has in the last few days” is why he plays.

Eriksen and the entire Danish team received a barrage of messages and congratulations after the midfielder suffered cardiac arrest during the Euro 2020 match against Finland. Schmeichel also praised the unity of his teammates over the past week.

He says the team has shown that “the reason we play football as kids is because of what football can do and how much togetherness it can reap.”

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Ukraine could do without injured defender Denys Popov in their final Group C game against Austria in Bucharest on Monday.

Ukrainian coach Andriy Shevchenko said the Dynamo Kiev player has a calf problem and “it is very likely that he will not play tomorrow”.

Popov was on the bench in the opening defeat 3-2 against the Netherlands and was not available for the second game against North Macedonia. Ukraine won this game 2-1.

Both Ukraine and Austria want to get out of the group stage for the first time at the tournament. They each have three points and a tie could be enough for both of them.

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Munich’s Lord Mayor Dieter Reiter will ask UEFA for permission to light up Germany’s stadium in rainbow colors as a symbol against homophobia and intolerance when the team plays against Hungary at the European Championships on Wednesday.

Reiter tells the dpa news agency “This is an important sign of tolerance and equality.”

The Munich city council had already called for the last group game to light up the stadium in rainbow colors to protest against a law passed by the Hungarian legislature on Tuesday that prohibits the sharing of content with minors that depicts homosexuality or gender reassignment. The law has been denounced as anti-LGBT discrimination by human rights groups.

In the application of the Munich city council it is said that it is important to “send a visible sign of solidarity with the LGBTQ community in Hungary”.

The city council says Munich “is committed to diversity, tolerance and equality in sport and in society as a whole”.

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Finland’s players have received a message of good fortune from the country’s president as they step into what coach Markku Kanerva calls “the greatest game in the history of Finnish football”.

Finland will play against Belgium in the European Championship on Monday and will likely need a point to qualify for the knockout stage on their first appearance at a major football tournament.

Finland’s defense attorney Jere Uronen says the “big news” from well-wishers is a personal greeting from Finnish President Sauli Niinistö.

Uronen says: “Just being here and playing here is the best time of our professional career for me and many of us and we don’t want it to end.”

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Italy can complete a perfect group stage at the European Championships with a victory over Wales.

The two teams will meet in the final set of Group A matches at the Stadio Olimpico in Rome.

Italy have already beaten Turkey and Switzerland and secured a spot in the round of 16. Wales ranks second in the group with four points.

At the same time as the game in Rome, the Turks will face Switzerland in Baku. Turkey has lost both games of the tournament so far. Switzerland have a point after a draw with Wales.



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