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Boosts for Romania and Bulgaria

Published: Wednesday 7 February 2007, 22.58CET rounds up Wednesday's early action, which saw wins for Bulgaria, Romania, Hungary and F.Y.R. Macedonia as Israel and Ukraine played out a draw.
Boosts for Romania and Bulgaria
Adrian Mutu celebrates scoring Romania's second goal ©AFP
Published: Wednesday 7 February 2007, 22.58CET

Boosts for Romania and Bulgaria rounds up Wednesday's early action, which saw wins for Bulgaria, Romania, Hungary and F.Y.R. Macedonia as Israel and Ukraine played out a draw.

Bulgaria won the Cyprus Football Association International Tournament with victory against the hosts, while there were also successes for Romania, Hungary and F.Y.R. Macedonia and Israel and Ukraine drew in Tel-Aviv. rounds up Wednesday's early action.

Israel 1-1 Ukraine
Israel mixed the old and new as Arik Benado won a record 90th cap alongside debutants Yuval Shpungin and 17-year-old Ben Sahar, yet they were denied victory by Maxym Kalynychenko. Walid Badir had fired the hosts ahead in the 38th minute, but the Ukraine midfielder had the final say 16 minutes from time, levelling after his penalty had been saved by Dudu Awat.

Romania 2-0 Moldova
Ionut Mazilu (76) scored on his first international appearance in over a year, before an Adrian Mutu header (89) sealed victory in Bucharest. Victor Piturca's side had found it difficult to break down a strong Moldova rearguard before the second-half introduction of Mazilu, in what was the final game to be played at the National-Lia Manoliu Stadium before it is demolished for reconstruction.

Cyprus 0-3 Bulgaria
Dimitar Berbatov struck twice as Bulgaria defeated hosts Cyprus to win the CFA International Tournament. The Tottenham Hotspur FC forward put Hristo Stoichkov's side in front on the stroke of half-time from the penalty spot, following Marios Elia's handball, and rounded off the night by converting from close range with three miutes remaining. Substitute Blagoy Georgiev (67) got Bulgaria's second.

Hungary 2-0 Latvia
Two Tamás Priskin goals earned Hungary third place in that tournament. Aleksejs Višnakovs had gone close for Latvia early on, yet it was Hungary that broke the deadlock on 31 minutes when Priskin capitalised on a fumble by goalkeeper Aleksandrs Kolinko. The 20-year-old made the game safe seven minutes into the second half, finishing off a counterattack.

Albania 0-1 F.Y.R. Macedonia
Otto Barić's Albania fell to defeat in their first match at the Loro Borici Stadium since a famous 3-1 victory against Russia four years ago. There were to be no scenes of joy as Stevica Ristic claimed the only goal on 33 minutes. Armend Dallku, when one-on-one with visiting goalkeeper Jane Nikoloski, wasted Albania's best chance shortly after the hour.

Uzbekistan 0-0 Azerbaijan
The hosts dominated the first half but saw Azerbaijan goalkeeper Farkhad Veliyev repel two dangerous Jafar Irismetov efforts. The away team upped the tempo after the break and might have taken the spoils had Brazilian-born striker Leandro Gomes not failed to make the most of a presentable opening.

China 2-1 Kazakhstan
Han Peng (34) and Lee Ching Yu (73) turned the game for China after falling behind to Murat Suyumagambetov's opener. The European side's goal came in the 19th minute when the forward turned in a rebound after an Anton Chichulin shot had been saved.

Iran 2-2 Belarus
A weakened Belarus, missing Aleksandr Hleb, Maksim Romashchenko, Sergei Gurenko and Valentin Belkevich, performed impressively to hold the 2006 FIFA World Cup finalists in Tehran. The hosts gained the initiative six minutes in through Rasoul Khatibi's overhead kick before Belarus, fielding an experimental 3-4-1-2 system, struck twice through substitute Vyacheslav Hleb. Mehdo Radjabzade netted a late equaliser.

Last updated: 08/02/07 0.47CET



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