Scotland located in Seville, Norway poker in Cyprus. Turkish coup in Croatia. Albania three-peat and the closest qualifier. Ok Poland and Kosovo, equal to Belarus and Romania
Away wins and first place in the standings: Vincenzo Montella’s debut off the bench in Turkey is worth remembering. Calhanoglu and his teammates recorded a 1-0 win over Croatia, moving them to +3 ahead of Dalic’s side. The first points for Latvia (2-0 against Armenia), while Spain suffered against Scotland, but in the end they won 2-0 (goals from Morata and Sunset) and moved to -3 from the top of Group A, and Norway also won, led by Haaland. (Dual) Albania and Poland play respectively against Cyprus, the Czech Republic and the Faroe Islands. In Group Nine, Kosovo beat Andorra 3-0, and Belarus tied (0-0) with Romania.
Great possession of the ball, few scoring chances. Spain, led by Captain Morata, collides with Scotland, which enters the match in Seville with a cohesive and well-positioned 5-4-1 formation. The guests never attack, but at the same time they do not give up exciting opportunities. In the second half, Ferran Torres and substitute Zaragoza tried to create numerical superiority with some passes on the flanks, but in the 60th minute Scotland took the lead from a free kick executed by McTominay. After a field review, the goal was disallowed due to a foul on the goalkeeper: Spain breathed a sigh of relief and, 12 minutes later, took the lead through Morata. And so De La Fuente’s move proved to be a good one, bringing on the 37-year-old Navas in the 67th minute. Five minutes pass and the Sevilla captain raises himself with a local characteristic: a fake cross, a deflection and a pocket for Alvaro, who makes no mistake with his header and gives La Roja 3 points. In the final, the Scots created chaos, and Spain even scored again, as new substitute Sunset appeared in the six-yard box and beat Gunn from close range. Looking at the table, Haaland’s Norway are -2 behind the Spaniards, having won 4-0 in Cyprus. In the first half, the City striker conceded few playable balls, so it was 1-0 with a curling shot from the edge of Sorloth. But in the second half, Erling’s usual tally rose to 27 goals in 27 matches with the national team. In the 65th minute, he turned on himself and shot the ball into the net after a corner kick, and in the 72nd minute he doubled the score with a header. In the end, Benfica player Orsnes also celebrated his victory over the opponent’s goalkeeper after a series of rebounds in the area.
A start to remember for Vincenzo Montella, who made his debut off the bench in Turkey, and secured a win in Croatia. Coach Dalic focuses on the old guard in midfield and on the “Italians” in attack: Modric, Brozovic and Kovacic support the restart of Pasalic and Brekalo, who are regular starters, wide in attack. The Turks suffer from the quality of the host team, but they have proven solid in defense and ferocity in attack. Man of the match was centre-forward Paris Yilmaz, who served deep on the half hour, escaping defenders and coming face to face with Livakovic, making it 1-0 with a volley. Croatia did not surrender, especially in the second half, and launched an attack on the opponent’s area. However, nothing needed to be done for Petkovic and his teammates, who lost 1-0 and dropped to second place in the group, -3 behind Calhanoglu and his teammates. The first points in Group D also went to Latvia, which beat Armenia 2-0 in the 6 p.m. match, scoring a goal in each half: first Ikauniks and then Baludis ousted Petrakov’s team, unable to respond despite 40 minutes of numerical superiority, dictated by Os’ expulsion in the 52nd minute.
Italy’s Albanians continue to impress. Committed to the match against the Czech Republic, Hysaj, Ajeti, Djemseti, Asani, Ramadani, Bajrami and Aslani started and won 3-0. In the ninth minute, Assane broke the deadlock with a wonderful shot from long range, and in the 40th minute the Czechs were left with ten men due to a handball in the area from Chytil, who had already been booked. The dismissal was particularly evident in the second half, when Sverí burst in and scored twice: in the 51st minute he took advantage of a wrong stop by Cekalisi to steal the ball and cut through Pavlenka, while scoring a hat-trick in the 73rd minute, pushing a millimeter cross into the net by Dacko. Albania now leads +4 over Poland, which won 2-0 against its host Faroe Islands. Szczesny, Zielinski and Milik are the starters, but today’s heroes are Szymanski and Buksa who score a goal in each half. The Fenerbahce midfielder opened the ball in the fourth minute with a curling shot from the edge of the penalty area, and the striker concluded the match with an easy header in the 65th minute.
Romania did not overcome a goalless draw with Belarus. On the other hand, Kosovo had fun in Andorra and won 3-0 thanks to the play of captain Rashica. In the 26th minute, the Kosovo national team took the lead with a diagonal pass from number 7, who easily broke free from Lovera’s mark and beat Iker with his left foot. In the second half, Rashica again capitalized on the rebound to take a 2-0 lead, and then debutant Zeqiri finished off the match by sliding the ball under the goalkeeper’s legs.
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