Friday, June 08, 2007

End of season matches

With the domestic season over in most main European leagues, the qualifiers for Euro 2008 continued with 2 action-packed days in early June. Sweden were awarded a 3-0 win by UEFA today after their match in Copenhagen was abandoned in the 89th minute by the referee who was attacked by a fan. At 3-3 the referee had just sent a Danish player off for violent conduct and pointed to the spot in Sweden’s favour. Denmark plummeted in the world rankings as a result of this decision.

Little Armenia surpassed expectation with a 2-1 win in Kazakhstan followed by a historic 1-0 victory over Poland in Yerevan. Norway enjoyed 2 home wins, beating both Malta and Hungary 4-0; while Finland had mixed fortunes in their home matches, suffering a 2-0 loss to Serbia and reversing the score line against Belgium days later.

Bosnia scored a last minute winner in a 5 goal thriller to send Turkey away empty-handed, while Bulgaria enjoyed a 2-0 win in Belarus. Lichtenstein gained a creditable 1-1 draw in Iceland and Israel retuned from Macedonia with a 2-1 win.

In the African Cup of Nations qualifiers the underdogs enjoyed home territory. Uganda celebrated a shock 2-1 win over Nigeria while Namibia beat Libya 1-0. Mauritania held African champions Egypt to a 1-1 draw with Tanzania enjoying the same outcome against Senegal. Mozambique triumphed 3-1 against Burkina Faso and Niger defeated Lesotho 2-0.

Burundi beat Botswana 1-0 in Rwanda. Gambia earned a 2-2 draw in Guinea while Angola could only manage to draw 1-1 in Eritrea.

The Gold Cup in the United States and Copa America in Venezuela will be followed by the Asian Cup this summer.