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Romania advance to European U-21 Football Championship semis, qualify for 2020 Olympic Games

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Romania on Monday advanced for the first time to the semi-finals of the European Under-21 football championship, and so qualified for the 2020 Tokyo Summer Olympics, after drawing France 0-0 on Monday evening in a Group C match of the tournament in Italy and San Marino, at the Dino Manuzzi Stadium in Cesena. 

Romania, an outsider, managed to win Group C, after defeating Croatia 4-1; England 4-2, and drawing France, the best team second place side, 0-0. In the semi-finals, Romania will meet defending champion Germany in Bologna on Thursday. 

Last time Romania competed in the men's football Olympic event was in 1964, when they reached the quarter-finals. This will be Romania's fourth participation in the Olympic football tournament after the 1924, 1952, and 1964 editions. 

The Romanian side had three options to advance to the semi-finals: win, draw (winning the group) or losing by at most two goals. 

The match was a tactical one from both sides, which were aware of the stakes and rarely risked. 

France 0-0 Romania 
Dino Manuzzi Stadium - Cesena: 12,861 spectators 
European Under-21 Championship - Group C 

The line-ups: 

France: 23. Paul Bernardoni - 2. Kelvin Amian, 4. Ibrahima Konate, 5. Dayot Upamecano, 15. Malang Sarr - 21. Olivier Ntcham, 6. Lucas Tousart (captain), 10. Matteo Guendouzi, 20. Marcus Thuram (7. Romain Del Castillo - 85) - 11. Jean-Philippe Mateta, 12. Jonathan Ikone (22. Jeff Reine-Adelaide - 85). Selector: Sylvain Ripoll. 
Unused substitutes: 1. Gautier Larsonneur, 22. Maxence Prevot - 13. Colin Dagba, 17. Moussa Niakhate, 19. Anthony Caci, 3. Fode Ballo-Toure, 8. Houssem Aouar, 18. Ibrahima Sissoko, 9. Moussa Dembele, 14. Jonathan Bamba. 

Romania: 1. Ionut Andrei Radu (captain) - 6. Cristian Manea, 5. Ionut Nedelcearu, 18. Adrian Rus, 2. Radu Boboc - 16. Dragos Nedelcu, 17. Alexandru Cicaldau (21. Tudor Baluta - 59) - 22 Darius Olaru (14. Vlad Dragomir - 72), 10. Ianis Hagi, 7. Florinel Coman - 9. George Puscas (11. Adrian Petre - 82). Selector: Matei Mirel Radoi. 
Unused substitutes: 12. Catalin Cabuz, 23. Andrei Daniel Vlad - 3. Florin Bogdan Stefan, 4. Alexandru Pascanu, 8. Dennis Man, 13. Grigore Ricardo, 15. Virgil Ghita, 19. Andrei Ivan, 20. Andrei Ciobanu. 

Referee: Georgi Kabakov; assistant referees: Martin Margaritov, Divan Valkov (all from Bulgaria); fourth official: Bobby Madden (Scotland); video referee: Ricardo De Burgos, video assistant referee: Xavier Estrada Fernandez (both from Spain), UEFA delegate: Virgar Hvidbro (Faroe), UEFA referee observer: Roberto Rosetti (Italy). 

Yellow cards: Rus (14), Manea (52), Thuram (58), Nedelcu (69).


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