Albert Rusnàk’s summer calendar for 2021 just got a little bit busier.
On Thursday in Belfast, Northern Ireland, Rusnàk and Slovakia topped Northern Ireland 2-1 after extra time in a qualifying playoff for the 2020 UEFA European Championships, punching Slovakia’s ticket to the tournament – which will be played in June and July of 2021 due to the global pandemic.
Rusnàk started and played 118 minutes for Slovakia, even seeing some time at right back in extra time. Slovakia took an early lead in the match on a goal from Juraj Kucka in the 11th minute and was minutes away from sealing victory in regulation before an own goal in the 87th minute equalized the match. Michal Duris scored the eventual game-winner in the 110th minute as Slovakia held on for the 2-1 victory.
The win sees Slovakia return to the Euros for a second-consecutive tournament after qualifying for the first time in the nation’s history in 2016.
The 2020 UEFA European Championships will be played in 12 European cities from June 11-July 11, 2021. Slovakia joins Spain, Poland and Sweden in Group E, opening the tournament against Poland on June 14 and will meet Sweden on June 18 before concluding the Group Stage against Spain on June 21. The first two matches will be in Dublin, Ireland, while the third will be in Bilbao, Spain.
Rusnàk, 25, just completed his fourth season with Real Salt Lake. He has 30 goals and 28 assists in 106 career appearances for RSL. He made his international debut in November, 2016, just after Slovakia last played in the European Championships. In 26 caps, he has five goals for his country.