Wed, 13 Jun 2012 07:58:35 GMT | By AP

Blaszczykowski seals draw for Poland

Warsaw: Alan Dzagoev scored his third goal of the European Championship and Jakub Blaszczykowski tied it in the second half as Russia and Poland drew 1-1 Tuesday.


Blaszczykowski seals draw for Poland

The match was marred before kickoff by fighting between hooligans from both countries, leaving several people injured as thousands of Russian fans marched to celebrate the Russia Day national holiday.

Dzagoev darted past defender Lukasz Piszczek in the 37th minute and sent a glancing header beyond goalkeeper Przemyslaw Tyton after a curling free kick from Andrei Arshavin.

But Poland was rewarded for its attacking intent in the 57th when Blaszczykowski cut in from the right and sent a searing left-foot drive into the far corner of the goal.

"I think we deserve praise because all of us put a lot into this match," Blaszczykowski said. "The tactics we set up before the match we carried out 100 percent."

The result left Russia at the top of Group A with four points but also kept alive Poland's chances of qualifying for the quarterfinals.

We're still in the tournament, so with this point a win in our final match puts us into the knockout stage," Blaszczykowski said.
Police said 10 people were injured in fighting before the match; seven Poles, two Russians and one German. Polish police also fired rubber bullets and tear gas at a group of young Poles who attacked them with glass bottles.

"To be honest, I haven't seen or heard anything and nor have the players," Russia coach Dick Advocaat said. "I don't know what has happened."

The march to the stadium by thousands of Russian fans was seen as a provocation by many Poles, who have long had tense relations with Russia.

The two countries share a difficult history, including decades of control by Moscow over Poland during the Cold War. Many Poles felt the Polish authorities should not have allowed the Russians to march as a group in Warsaw given the historical wounds.

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