Spain, Russia and Bosnia qualify

A review of Tuesday's European World Cup qualifying action as Spain, Russia and Bosnia all secured their places in Brazil.

Last Updated: 15/10/13 at 23:16 Post Comment

Spain celebrate against Georgia on Tuesday night

Spain celebrate against Georgia on Tuesday night

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World Cup holders Spain sealed their place at next year's tournament in Brazil as they finished top of qualifying Group I with a 2-0 victory at home to Georgia.

Alvaro Negredo (26) and Juan Mata (61) were the scorers for the Spanish, who beat France to the automatic spot.

Les Bleus will go into the play-offs after ending their group campaign with a 3-0 victory over Finland, with goals from Franck Ribery (8), Joona Toivio (77 own goal) and Karim Benzema (87).

Russia secured their place at next summer's finals by the narrowest of margins after conceding a last-minute equaliser in their qualifier against Azerbaijan.

Fabio Capello's men began the day three points clear of second-placed Portugal and needing a draw in Baku to ensure they would be on the plane to Brazil.

Roman Shirokov set Russia on their way after 16 minutes and a win looked even more likely when Maksim Medvedev was sent off for the home side after 73 minutes.

But Vagif Javadov's last-minute strike set nerves fluttering, although the visitors held on for the result they needed.

Russia finish the group one point ahead of Portugal, who were comfortable 3-0 winners over Luxembourg but still have to settle for a play-off spot.

The 29th-minute dismissal of Aurelien Joachim left the visitors with a mountain to climb and they could not keep out goals from Silvestre Varela (30), Nani (36) and Helder Postiga (78).

The other match in the group between Israel and Northern Ireland ended in a 1-1 draw, with Eden Ben Basat giving the home side a 44th-minute lead before Steven Davis' reply (73).

Bosnia-Herzegovina will head to the World Cup finals for the first time in their history thanks to a 1-0 win over Lithuania.

Vedad Ibisevic scored the only goal after 68 minutes to ensure the Balkans would top Group G ahead of Greece, whose 2-0 victory at home to Liechtenstein was not enough.

Dimitris Salpingidis (seven) and Giorgos Karagounis (81) were the scorers for the Greeks, who now face a play-off if they want to make it to Brazil next summer.

England are also heading to Brazil after strikes from Wayne Rooney (41) and Steven Gerrard (88) earned them a 2-0 win over Poland at Wembley.

Ukraine had to settle for second spot in Group H despite an 8-0 demolition of San Marino. Marko Devic grabbed a hat-trick for the visitors with Yevhen Seleznyov (two), Andriy Yarmolenko, Roman Bezus and Vitaliy Mandzyuk also on the scoresheet.

Moldova rounded off their campaign with a 5-2 success in Montenegro.

Alexandr Antoniuc scored twice for the visitors with Igor Armas, Eugen Sidorenco and Artur Ionita also on target. Stevan Jovetic grabbed both of Montenegro's goals.

In Group D, Romania beat off competition from Turkey and Hungary to finish second and bag a play-off place.

A 2-0 victory over Estonia, courtesy of two goals from Ciprian Marica (31 and 81), saw the Romanians finish two points clear of Hungary, who were also 2-0 winners over Andorra.

Nermanja Nikolic's header (52) and an Ildefons Lima own goal (79) teed up the result for Hungary, who responded positively to last week's 8-1 mauling at the hands of Holland and the subsequent resignation of coach Sandor Egervari.

Turkey's hopes of finishing runners-up were ended with a 2-0 loss to Holland, for whom Arjen Robben (nine) and Wesley Sneijder (47) were the scorers.

Iceland will also have another shot at reaching Brazil 2014 as they claimed second place in Group E with a 1-1 draw in Norway.

The visitors led through Kolbeinn Sigthorsson's 13th-minute strike and although Daniel Braaten levelled things up on the half hour, the point was enough to see Iceland through ahead of Slovenia, who lost 1-0 in Switzerland.

Granit Xhaka scored the only goal in that match after 74 minutes for a Swiss side who had already won the group.

The pool's other match between Cyprus and Albania finished goalless.

A last-minute goal from Renars Rode saw Latvia snatch a 2-2 draw at home to Slovakia in their final Group G qualifier.

The visitors were two goals ahead after 16 minutes thanks to Martin Jakubko and Kornel Salata, but Valerijs Sabala pulled one back early in the second half before Rode's late heroics.

Croatia take the last play-off spot on offer even though they fell to a 2-0 loss in Scotland in Group A.

Robert Snodgrass and Steven Naismith were the heroes for the home side, but Croatia's earlier efforts in the group stage ensured they finished among the top eight second-placed teams.

Denmark were the side to miss out on the play-offs, finishing second in Group B with a 6-0 rout of Malta courtesy of goals from Morten Rasmussen (two), Daniel Agger (two), Andreas Bjelland and Bille Nielsen.

The Danes pipped the Czech Republic to second spot, although Borek Dockal's strike ensured the Czechs completed their campaign with a 1-0 win at home to Bulgaria.

Group B winners Italy were held to a 2-2 draw by Armenia. Alessandro Florenzi and Mario Balotelli were on target for the Azzuri with Yura Movsisyan and Henrikh Mkhitaryan replying for the visitors.

Belgium were denied a winning end to their successful Group A campaign as they played out a 1-1 draw with Wales. Kevin De Bruyne gave the hosts a 65th-minute lead but that was cancelled out by Aaron Ramsey.

Serbia were emphatic 5-1 winners over Macedonia, with goals from Stefan Ristovski (own goal), Dusan Basta, Aleksandr Kolarov, Dusan Tadic and Stefan Scepovic.

Macedonia's consolation came from the boot of Adis Jahovic.

Group C had already been decided before the final round of fixtures, with winners Germany coming away from second-placed Sweden with a 5-3 victory.

Andre Schurrle's hat-trick formed the backbone of Germany's victory with Mesut Ozil and Mario Gotze chipping in. Tobias Hysen netted twice for the Scandinavian hosts with Alex Kacaniklic adding another.

Andreas Ivanschitz, Sebastien Prodl and David Alaba were the scorers as Austria beat the Faroe Islands 3-0.

The Republic of Ireland hit back from Dmitry Shomko's opener to see off Kazakhstan 3-1 in Dublin. Robbie Keane and John O'Shea turned things around for the Irish before a late own goal from Andrey Finonchenko rounded things off.


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