Liverpool FC at Euro 2016: How the Reds' internationals got on in the tournament's second week

Christian Benteke and Daniel Sturridge were among the Liverpool players to get their first minutes at Euro 2016, but how did the Reds' 12 representatives fare across the second round of group stage games over in France?

Liverpool FC at Euro 2016: How the Reds' internationals got on in the tournament's second week
(Picture: Getty Images)

It was another memorable few days at Euro 2016 for a number of Liverpool's representatives out in France.

The Reds boast the joint-highest number of players at the tournament, with only Juventus matching their tally of 12, and most of them earned more minutes in the second round of group stage fixtures.

But with almost half of the tournament's matches having now been played with one more group game to play for each country, how exactly did Liverpool's internationals fare in the second week?

Slovakia

Skrtel, donning the captain's armband, helped Slovakia to a maiden Euros win. (Picture: Getty Images)
Skrtel, donning the captain's armband, helped Slovakia to a maiden Euros win. (Picture: Getty Images)

Martin Skrtel wrote himself into the history books as he captained the Slovakian national team to their first ever win at the European Championships, beating Russia 2-1.

The 31-year-old defender's future on Merseyside is slowly but surely coming to a close, but there were no signs of distraction as Skrtel manned the centre of the back-line.

Marek Hamsik played a huge role, setting up the first goal before scoring a stunning second, but Skrtel did well alongside the rest of Slovakia's defence as they stemmed off the Russians' late-comeback after Denis Glushakov had reduced arrears with 10 minutes remaining.

The victory gave Slovakia's chances of reaching the knockout rounds a massive boost after they had fallen to Wales in their first game, but they can guarantee their progression to the last 16 with a win over England in Saint-Etienne on Monday.

A draw  would mean they can finish no lower than third, meanwhile if Russia beat Wales, then Slovakia would finish second because of their head-to-head record.

England

Sturridge celebrates his stoppage-time victory. (Picture: Getty Images)
Sturridge celebrates his stoppage-time victory. (Picture: Getty Images)

Daniel Sturridge was the hero for England as he came off the bench to fire a 91st-minute winner to ensure a monumental 2-1 victory over Wales and move the Three Lions to first place in Group B.

Trailing 1-0 at the break to Gareth Bale's 35-yard free-kick, Sturridge came on alongside Jamie Vardy of Leicester City for his first cameo of the tournament and immediately helped inject some intent and urgency to England's play.

Overall, Roy Hodgson's side looked more dangerous and likely to score with Sturridge on the pitch and he played his part in the equalising goal, his clipped cross causing issues before a loose ball dropped the way of Vardy and he lashed home from close-range.

And having strayed a few shots high and wide earlier in the second-half, Sturridge produced a moment of match-winning class in stoppage-time - the kind of quality that Liverpool supporters are well accustomed to seeing from the No.15. 

Playing a one-two with Vardy on the edge of the area, Sturridge's weak-footed poke towards goal caught out the Wales goalkeeper and was enough for England to steal all three points, as well as hugely improving his chances of a first start at Euro 2016 in the coming games.

Otherwise, Adam Lallana played 73 minutes before making way for Manchester United teenager Marcus Rashford to make his tournament debut and was impressive throughout with a tireless performance from attacking midfield.

Of the Reds' three other England internationals, Nathaniel Clyne, Jordan Henderson and James Milner all remained on the substitutes' bench throughout.

They'll be hoping to get their first minutes in their final game against Slovakia, where they simply need to win to secure top spot in the group. 

Wales

Allen battles with Tottenham Hotspur's Dele Alli. (Picture: Getty Images)
Allen battles with Tottenham Hotspur's Dele Alli. (Picture: Getty Images)

Although Chris Coleman's men were ultimately defeated, Joe Allen continued his excellent individual run of performances with yet another solid display in midfield for Wales in Lens.

The 26-year-old's stock soared towards the end of the season as he produced a number of fine displays in an advanced role, and he has carried similar form into the Euros.

Adding composure and calm to Wales' midfield when in possession, Allen was as effective going forward as he was defensively, breaking up a number of attacks as he snapped into tackles as he took up a more withdrawn role in the middle.

His compatriot Craig Bellamy lauded Allen after full-time as a pundit for BBC Sport, insisting that he "knows his role so well" and praised him for "constantly making little interceptions to stop the ball going into the feet of Harry Kane or Vardy."

"He's so neat and tidy on the ball and always makes those angles for passes which make it easy for team-mates to play off him," Bellamy, who played 79 times for Liverpool and scored 18 goals, suggesting that Wales must have came away disappointed that they "could not get even more out of him by playing the ball better through the midfield."

After starting in their win over Slovakia, Danny Ward dropped to the bench with first-choice goalkeeper Wayne Hennessey returning to the starting eleven after recovering from injury.

From their final group game, Wales must beat Russia to ensure a top-two finish, with results elsewhere likely to determine whether they finish in first or second. If they lose and England win, they will finish third on their head-to-head record.

Germany

Emre Can is yet to make an appearance for Germany at Euro 2016. (Picture: Getty Images)
Emre Can is yet to make an appearance for Germany at Euro 2016. (Picture: Getty Images)

Emre Can sat on the bench yet again as he awaits his first appearance for reigning world champions Germany at a major tournament, sitting out of their 0-0 stalemate with Poland in Paris.

Die Mannschaft are top of Group C with four points from two games and need only a point against Northern Ireland to guarantee qualification to the next round, though Poland's result against Ukraine could prevent them from finishing top dependent on the two team's goal differences.

Having made six caps for Die Mannschaft, Can could yet make an appearance at the Euros - with Joachim Low's Germany one of the clear favourites to reach the final stages of, or even win, this summer's tournament.

Belgium 

Benteke came off the bench for his first minutes of the tournament. (Picture: Getty Images)
Benteke came off the bench for his first minutes of the tournament. (Picture: Getty Images)

Christian Benteke came off the bench for his first bow at Euro 2016 as Belgium quite comprehensively defeated Republic of Ireland 3-0 in Bordeaux.

Another whose future at Anfield is up in the air, Benteke had to sit on the sidelines as the Red Devils were stifled by Italy in their first group game - but he was introduced on 82 minutes to replace Romelu Lukaku, who fired a second-half brace either side of Axel Witsel's header.

Divock Origi and Simon Mignolet were both unused substitutes, the former having featured in their opening game off of the bench - only to waste a number of promising opportunities. 

Ahead of a final game against Sweden, the Belgians' win bumps them up to second in Group E - with a win enough to secure second-place behind Italy.