Late own-goal gifts Hungary a draw against Iceland
A late own-goal handed Hungary a share of the spoils as they came from behind to draw 1-1 with Iceland in a tight affair at the Stade Velodrome.
Gylfi Sigurdsson converted a 39th-minute penalty to open the scoring for Iceland ahead of Portugal’s match with Austria on Saturday evening.
The penalty was given after Hungary keeper Gabor Kiraly failed to clear a cross and in the resulting scramble Aron Gunnarsson was deemed to have been unfairly challenged by Tamas Kadar.
Iceland finally crumbled late on in the second half following sustained pressure from Hungary. Substitute Nemanja Nikolic delivered a low cross from the left and Birkir Saevarsson poked the ball into his own net after pressure from the Hungarian attackers.
That sparked jubilant celebrations in the crowd at the Stade Velodrome with fireworks, as has become common in the tournament, again being set off.
The start of the match was overshadowed by reports that fighting had broken out between some Hungary fans and the police inside the stadium.
Fights breaking out between Hungarian fans and police inside the Stade Vélodrome an hour before kick off.
— Steve Wilson (@SteveWilson1967) June 18, 2016
Hungary will feel the result was the least they deserved, although they found chances hard to come by.
Captain Balazs Dzsudzsak did have one chance in the early stages but his fierce shot from the edge of the area was blocked by Aron Gunnarsson and he later had another effort deflected for a corner.
Iceland went close when Jon Dadi Bodvarsson headed over and Sigurdsson might have hoped for a better outcome after whipping in a dangerous-looking ball that evaded everyone.
Iceland came alive on the half-hour mark as Sigurdsson outmuscled Tamas Kadar to turn and shoot but Gabor Kiraly saved well with his feet.
Kiraly needed to stand up well again just moments later, but this time to redeem himself after playing team-mate Richard Guzmics into trouble. Guzmics was forced into a rushed clearance from a poor Kiraly pass and Iceland intercepted. Kolbeinn Sigthorsson swept in but the goalkeeper turned his shot away for a corner.
The danger was not over, however, and Kiraly compounded his error by spilling the corner. The ball ran loose and Gunnarsson went down under a Kadar challenge. It was perhaps a harsh penalty but Sigurdsson made no mistake from the spot.
Iceland seemed content to sit on their lead in the second half, although Bodvarsson attempted the spectacular with an overhead kick that flew well wide.
Hungary were allowed to keep pushing forward but Iceland stayed deep and limited their opportunities. Dzsudzsak did take aim with two long-range free-kicks but only of them troubled Hannes Halldorsson, and the goalkeeper clutched that at the second attempt.
Clear-cut chances were few and far between but Hungary’s pressure eventually bore fruit as they found space down the right with 87 minutes on the clock.
Laszlo Kleinheisler released Nikolic and his cross into the middle was diverted in by a tired Saevarsson.
Iceland might have snatched the lead back in injury time but Sigursson fired a free-kick into the wall and veteran substitute Eidur Gudjohnsen put the rebound wide.