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Euro 2020 qualifiers PICS: Spain, Ukraine win big

Last updated on: June 08, 2019 11:42 IST

A summary of the Euro 2020 qualification matches played on Friday.

IMAGE: Jose Gaya scores Spain's fourth goal against Faroe Islands in their Euro 2020 Group F Qualifier in Torsvollur, Torshavn, Faroe Islands. Photograph: Sergio Perez/Reuters

Spain eased to their third win from three games in their Euro 2020 qualification campaign by beating the Faroe Islands 4-1 away on Friday to stay two points clear at the top of Group F.

Captain Sergio Ramos put the visitors ahead from a corner in the sixth minute and Jesus Navas slammed the ball into the far corner in the 19th for Spain, who were still without coach Luis Enrique, who is on extended leave for personal reasons.

 

The unfancied Faroes struck back on the half-hour mark though when Klaemint Olsen rose to flick a header from defender Odmar Faero into the net on the volley, although Spain restored their two-goal advantage four minutes later.

Midfielder Isco fired a shot against the post which bounced off goalkeeper Teitur Gestsson and trickled into the net to be given as an own goal, while Spain left back Jose Gaya scored the best goal of the game in the 71st minute with a classy chip.

Spain top the group with nine points from three games while Sweden are second with seven after a straightforward 3-0 win at home to Malta.

Romania are third on four points after snatching a 2-2 draw at Norway after trailing by two goals.

Striker Robin Quaison put Sweden ahead against Malta in the second minute by following up on the rebound and Viktor Claesson increased their lead early in the second half with a lofted finish, set-up by a classy backflicked pass from Marcus Berg.

Teenage forward Alexander Isak added the third goal late on after coming on as a substitute.

Norway hold Sweden

Norway had salvaged a point in an epic 3-3 draw in their last outing against Sweden with a last-gasp goal but they were the victims of a stoppage-time equaliser against Romania.

Tarik Elyounoussi gave the hosts the lead in the 56th minute and former Real Madrid midfielder Martin Odegaard looked to have sealed Norway's first victory of the campaign when he struck in the 70th.

Yet visiting striker Claudiu Keseru had other ideas, pulling a goal back in the 77th minute with a header from close range before completing the comeback in stoppage time with another strike.

Late Duffy header gives Ireland 1-1 draw in Denmark

IMAGE: Shane Duffy scores Ireland's first goal. Photograph: Lee Smith /Reuters

Ireland defender Shane Duffy's towering late header kept their unbeaten run in the Euro 2020 qualifiers intact as the Group D leaders drew 1-1 away to Denmark.

The hosts dominated the midfield for much of the game and created plenty of chances but had problems finding the target and it took the introduction of substitute Pierre Emile Hojbjerg in the 73rd minute to break the deadlock.

The strapping midfielder, who replaced Lasse Schone, was only on the pitch for four minutes when he timed his run into the box perfectly to send a header flying past goalkeeper Darren Randolph to give his side the lead.

The setback saw the Irish throw caution to the wind as they poured forward looking for an equaliser and got their reward when Duffy brought them level five minutes from time when he climbed highest to head home Alan Judge's free kick.

The draw left Ireland on seven points from three matches at the top of the five-team group, three points ahead of Switzerland who have a game in hand.

Earlier, Georgia beat visitors Gibraltar 3-0 to register their first points after three games and move into third place above Denmark, who have two points in fourth but a game in hand. Gibraltar are bottom without a point from their two matches.

Poland score third straight win; Zahavi gets hat-trick for Israel

IMAGE: Poland's Robert Lewandowski applauds fans after the match. Photograph: Ognen Teofilovski/Reuters

Poland beat North Macedonia 1-0 away on Friday to remain top of Euro 2020 qualifying Group G with their third win in three games while Israel beat Latvia 3-0 thanks to an Eran Zahavi hat-trick.

Poland substitute Krzysztof Piatek got the winner with an overhead kick from a corner two minutes into the second half in Skopje, with the visitors having dominated the first period but managing only one shot on target.

North Macedonia had won their previous six home games, scoring 19 goals.

Poland are on nine points, two ahead of Israel, in second place after Zahavi's superb performance earned them a comfortable victory in Latvia.

The top scorer of the qualifying phase curled in a fine free-kick after 10 minutes and added another on the hour.

He completed his second hat-trick in a row in the 81st to take his tally to seven goals in Israel's three qualifiers. Zahavi had also got three in a 4-2 win over Austria in March.

The Austrians earned their first points by beating Slovenia 1-0 thanks to Guido Burgstaller's 74th minute winner.

Burgstaller scored on the rebound after Marco Arnautovic's effort was saved.

Austria are fourth on three points, one ahead of the Slovenia and one behind third-placed North Macedonia.

Five-star Ukraine thump Serbia to stay top of Group B

IMAGE: Viktor Tsygankov celebrates after scoring Ukraine's second goal. Photograph: Gleb Garanich/Reuters

Two goals each from midfielder Viktor Tsygankov and forward Yevhen Konoplyanka helped Ukraine to an impressive 5-0 home win over Serbia in their Euro 2020 Group B qualifier on Friday.

The result kept the Ukrainians top of the group on seven points from three games, three ahead of Luxembourg who drew 1-1 at Lithuania in the section's other fixture.

Serbia's heaviest defeat as an independent nation came after coach Mladen Krstajic's adventurous 3-5-2 formation, including four attacking midfielders, backfired spectacularly.

Ukraine carved open the visiting defence almost at will and Tsygankov put the home side in the driving seat with two quick goals midway through the first half.

He opened the floodgates with a sweeping shot from 10 metres after a fine pass by right wing back Oleksandr Karavaev and doubled the lead with a thunderbolt from 20 metres into the top corner after Serbia had lost possession.

Konoplyanka netted the third barely 30 seconds into the second half, curling a neat effort past goalkeeper Marko Dmitrovic from the edge of the penalty area.

Livewire Konoplyanka made it 5-0 with what was almost a carbon copy after striker Roman Yaremchuk had scored his first international goal for Ukraine, tapping in a superb assist by Karavaev.

Only a string of good saves by Dmitrovic stopped Ukraine from scoring more goals against the hapless Serbians, who were bereft of pace and ideas in attack and looked like conceding every time the home side went forward.

Luxembourg missed a chance to complete the double over 10-man Lithuania after beating them 2-1 at home in March.

Gerson Rodrigues gave Luxembourg a 20th-minute lead before Lithuania, who had Saulius Mikoliunis sent off in the 42nd, salvaged a point thanks to an Arvydas Novikovas effort in the closing stages.

Patrik Schick scored twice as the Czech Republic fought back after conceding an early goal to beat Bulgaria 2-1 at home on Friday, securing their first points of their Euro 2020 qualifying campaign.

Czechs fight back to beat Bulgaria

AS Roma's Schick scored in each half to cancel out Ismail Isa's third-minute opener for Bulgaria, who stunned the hosts at the Sinobo Arena in Prague when he converted a cross from Popov.

Schick levelled after 19 minutes with a shot into the bottom left corner and gave the Czechs the lead in the fifth minute of the second half, dribbling past two defenders before giving the keeper no chance with his shot.

The win moved the Czechs into second in Group A on three points, three behind early leaders England, who beat them 5-0 at Wembley in their opening match.

Bulgaria have two points, level with Montenegro and Kosovo who drew 1-1 in the other game in the group on Friday.

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