Defender Nemanja Vidić feels Serbia have removed a key rival from the Group A qualifying race following Saturday's 2-0 victory against Finland.
Spanish coach Javier Clemente's position seemed to be in some doubt following a 2-1 defeat in Kazakhstan in March but a 1-1 draw against Portugal and victory against Finland in Helsinki has left Serbia third in the section, level on 14 points with the UEFA EURO 2004™ hosts. An early goal from Boško Janković and a late strike from Milan Jovanović did the damage on Saturday.
'One team less'
Manchester United FC defender Vidić believes his side are now engaged in a straight battle with Poland and Portugal for one of the two qualifying places, saying: "We have one team less to worry about and that's Finland. However, we are a still have a long way to go and it's going to be an uphill struggle because we're up against Poland and Portugal."
"We controlled the game very well after scoring the early goal and sealed it in the closing stages," added 57-year-old coach Clemente who singled out debutants Antonio Rukavina, Zdravko Kuzmanović and Jovanović for special praise. "Rukavina is so young and he played like he had a wealth of experience, Jovanović did a great job while Kuzmanović was also very impressive." Serbia travel to Belgium for their next qualifier on 22 August.
©UEFA.com 1998-2016. All rights reserved.