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Europe, News, Under 19s

Host Nation Lithuania Determined To Recover Against Spain and Portugal Youngsters

Lithuania drew the group of death with Netherlands, Spain and Portugal all to face.

Lithuania drew the group of death with Netherlands, Spain and Portugal all to face.

After the misery of an added time winner from the Netherlands on Saturday, Lithuania U19s are determined to grab three points against Spain or Portugal in this year’s European U19 Championship.

A tall feat for any side across the globe, the host nation believe they have home advantage on their side with a set of fans that won’t be beaten as easily as they might be this week.

Defender Lukas Artimalicius, who grabbed a goal against Holland in their opening game, told Uefa.com: I want to thank all the supporters for coming. I’ve never experienced anything like that in my life – scoring such a goal and making so many fans happy. Thanks to them.”

Lithuanian goalkeeper Tomas Švedkauskas was also quick to praise the supporters in Kaunas: “The atmosphere was brilliant. I hope the fans will also attend the next game in those numbers, because it’s an entirely different feeling playing in front of such a crowd.”

Rai Vloet scored in the 95 minute in that game to put Netherlands top of the group on goals scored, so understandably Artimalicius was devastated when the ball hit the back of the net. “Unfortunately we could not keep our concentration and we conceded in the last minute. That is very disappointing.

“We were a bit nervous at the start, since we’d never played a match at such a level, and we initially failed to play as we wanted to.

“In the second half we showed what we are capable of. The Dutch had to put in a lot of effort but tiredness and lack of concentration probably cost us in the end. I actually said, ‘This is the most important corner of the game,’ [before Vloet’s winner] but it happened like that anyway.”

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About Tom Bennett

I'm a 21-year-old Multimedia Journalism student at Bournemouth University aspiring to be one of Britain's top sports journalists. Follow me on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn for contact and further information.

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