Gjanni Alioski breaks a 29-year Leeds United Euros drought in North Macedonia defeat to Ukraine

Gjanni Alioski has become the first Leeds United player to score at the Euros for 29 years.

Thursday, 17th June 2021, 4:31 pm
Leeds United's Gjanni Alioski scores for North Macedonia against Ukraine at the Euros. Pic: Getty
Leeds United's Gjanni Alioski scores for North Macedonia against Ukraine at the Euros. Pic: Getty

The Whites defender found the back of the net for North Macedonia against Ukraine as his side fell to a 2-1 loss in Bucharest.

Alioski helped his nation make history last year by qualifying for a major finals for the first time in the country's existence.

They are the lowest ranked team at this summer's delayed tournament and are facing elimination from the competition following a second straight defeat in Group C.

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The 29-year-old was again selected in a left wing-back role similarly to that of the loss to Austria last weekend.

Ukraine scored twice in the space of five minutes in the opening half to take control of the encounter with Alioski's outfit.

Andriy Yarmolenko tapped home just before the half hour mark from a corner before he turned provider to set up Roman Yaremchuk to double the lead.

North Macedonia, though, replied through Whites man Alioski as they won a penalty on the hour through legendary striker Goran Pandev.

The Leeds defender initially saw his effort saved by goalkeeper Georgiy Buschan but followed up by volleying home the rebound in emphatic fashion to spark wild celebrations.

In finding the back of the net, Alioski became the first Whites player to score at the European Championships since Gary McAllister for Scotland in 1992 against the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS).

Ukraine then fluffed a chance themselves from the spot late on to make the scoreline more comfortable as Ruslan Malinovskiy saw a penalty saved by Stole Dimitrievski.

Andriy Shevchenko's men, though, did enough to hold on for all three points.

Ukraine will play Austria next on Monday evening while North Macedonia face the Netherlands on the same day.