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Turkiye, Georgia level after thrilling first half


Turkiye and Georgia played a lively first 45 minutes with everything left to play for in the second half.

The two teams are deadlocked at 1-1 at halftime from Dortmund in their Group F opener at UEFA Euro 2024.

A contender for goal of the tournament put Turkiye up in the 25th.

Off of a corner, Georgia believed they had dealt with the danger, but the ball fell to Fenerbahce's Mert Muldur at the edge of the area who one-timed his rocket to leave Giorgi Mamardashvili with no chance to stop it.

The Turks thought they had a second only two minutes later, but Kenan Yildiz's effort was ruled offside after a VAR check.

The goal would have gone a long way to bury Georgia, but the debutants were rejuvenated by the close call. In the 32nd, Giorgi Kochorashvili danced into the Turkiye area before cutting back to Georges Mikautadze for the Metz man to score the first ever goal for Georgia at a major international tournament. Mikautadze squeezed it inside the near post with questions to be asked of Mert Gunok in his reaction.

In kicking off, Georgia became the 36th different team to play at a Euro and they came to play in what was an easy half to watch for neutral spectators.

In the early going, Turkiye dominated played with little to show for it.

Turkiye attempted to play in B.A. Yilmaz behind the Georgia backline, but he was too isolated a figure to make it work.

From the first set piece in the sixth, Kaan Ayhan should have done better with a free header from a corner, but arched his effort over the bar. Minutes later, back-to-back chances went for naught with Abdulkerim Bardakci heading wide from a corner before Ayhan rang a blast from distance off of the post in the 10th that was recorded at 122 kilometres per hour.

Georgia almost made them pay for wasted chances almost immediately. A shot from Anzor Mekvabishvili was deflected by Bardakci and forced Gunok into a fine save in the 13th, Then in the 17th, Mekvabishvili sent an inviting ball across the face of goal, but nobody had made the run to meet it.

Portugal and Czechia meet in Group F's second game later on Tuesday,