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European first for Gibraltar, Israel end wait

Published: Thursday 5 June 2014, 8.27CET
International friendly round-up (1-5 June): Kyle Casciaro earned Gibraltar's first win as a UEFA nation, Israel ended a 12-month wait and Austria's form continued.
European first for Gibraltar, Israel end wait
Kyle Casciaro is mobbed after scoring the only goal for Gibraltar against Malta ©Ian Martinez, snaprimages.com
 
Published: Thursday 5 June 2014, 8.27CET

European first for Gibraltar, Israel end wait

International friendly round-up (1-5 June): Kyle Casciaro earned Gibraltar's first win as a UEFA nation, Israel ended a 12-month wait and Austria's form continued.

05/06: Uruguay 2-0 Slovenia
Paris Saint-German striker Edinson Cavani scored one and helped create a second for substitute Christian Stuani as Uruguay prevailed in front of a crowd of 50,000 at the Centenario, scene of their victory over Argentina in the first FIFA World Cup final in 1930. Slovenia were resolute opponents, and Andraž Kirm and Rajko Rotman went close before Cavani broke the deadlock with half-time approaching, getting between the centre-backs to head in a Diego Forlán cross. Stuani secured the win 15 minutes from time, tapping in after the ball ran loose from Samir Handanovič under a challenge from Cavani.

05/06: Chile 2-0 Northern Ireland
Substitutes Eduardo Vargas and Mauricio Pinilla struck in the last 11 minutes as FIFA World Cup-bound Chile broke Northern Ireland resistance in Valparaiso. The hosts dominated possession but Michael O'Neill's side had the better chances in the first half, going close through Conor McLaughlin and Oliver Norwood. Chile, though, found their groove in the second period and after Jorge Valdívia struck a post, Alexis Sánchez teed up fellow replacement Vargas for the opener. Three minutes later Pinilla sealed victory.

04/06: Gibraltar 1-0 Malta
Kyle Casciaro's goal on 64 minutes earned a first win for UEFA's newest member nation as Malta's concentration slipped in the Algarve. A loose clearance and a header over the top had Malta in disarray after what had been an even game, with Casciaro coolly finishing from just inside the box to earn Allen Bula's side a first friendly win at the fifth attempt. Roderick Briffa had earlier crashed a long-range shot against the crossbar for Malta, and while Pietro Ghedin's side turned up the heat in the closing stages, they were unable to trouble Jamie Robba in the Gibraltar goal.

04/06: Algeria 2-1 Romania
Cristian Tănase missed two early chances for Romania, and Sofiane Feghouli proved similarly profligate for Algeria before a fumble by Costel Pantilimon on 22 minutes allowed Nabil Bentaleb to prise the lead for Algeria on a rainy night in Geneva. Alexandru Chipciu swiftly responded for Romania, though, finishing after being set up by Alexandru Maxim. Both sides continued to play exciting football after the break but Algeria finished the stronger, Al Arabi Soudani restoring their lead on 66 minutes from Saphir Taïder's cross. It took two fine saves from Silviu Lung – on as a substitute on his 25th birthday – to deny Soudani further goals.

04/06: Hungary 1-0 Albania
Tamás Priskin's 82nd-minute penalty made the difference in a dour contest in Budapest, Priskin registering his 13th international goal after being fouled in the box to give Attila Pintér his first victory as Hungary coach. Gergely Rudolf saw a curling 20-metre effort deflected behind in the first half, while Shkëlzen Gashi's drive following a fine counterattack was well held by Hungary's debutant goalkeeper Dániel Rózsa. The second half did not flow as freely, Ergys Kacë's foul on Priskin proving to be the decisive moment, though Albania responded well and Rózsa had to be alert to tip Ansi Agolli's fierce drive over the bar.

04/06: Iceland 1-0 Estonia
A crowd of just over 5,000 watched Iceland get the better of Estonia in their final friendly game before they kick off their UEFA EURO 2016 qualifying campaign against Turkey on 9 September. Estonia hit the post, Iceland struck the crossbar, and both Hannes Thór Halldórsson and the goalkeeper who replaced him at half-time, Ögmundur Kristinsson, had important saves to make. The game was settled in the 54th minute, Kolbeinn Sigthórsson stepping up to the penalty spot to power in his 15th goal in just 23 international appearances after Karol Mets fouled Rúrik Gíslason in the box.

03/06: Czech Republic 1-2 Austria
Austria will start UEFA EURO 2016 qualifying against Sweden on 8 September unbeaten in five since last October's defeat by the same nation in Solna thanks to this victory in Olomouc. Marcel Sabitzer gave Austria a 34th-minute lead after being set up by Marko Arnautović but Tomáš Hořava levelled before the break, beautifully sweeping the ball into tbe bottom right-hand corner from 18 metres out.

However, Julian Baumgartlinger settled matters 16 minutes from time at the second attempt after a blocked shot, to inflict the Czechs' first defeat of 2014. "I am disappointed with the result, but not with the ommittment of our players, I believe we are on the right path," said Czech Republic coach Pavel Vrba. Opposite numner Marcel Koller added: "It was a spectacular game with chances for both sides, we made too many mistakes and did not concentrate for  the full 90 minutes, I think it was the reflection of the end of a long season."

03/06: United Arab Emirates 1-0 Georgia
Temuri Ketsbaia's team, who beat Saudi Arabia 2-0 in Spain last Thursday but were missing the likes of Jano Ananidze and injured Otar Martsvaladze, put on a promising display in Meyrin, near Geneva, and Alexander Kobakhidze hit the woodwork early in the second half. But they were were undone when Habib Fardan headed in Omar Abdulrahman's free-kick for a UAE side that had been 20 games unbeaten before last week's 4-3 loss to Armenia in their Swiss camp. Georgia Under-19 midfielder Giorgi Papunashvili made his senior debut in what is their last scheduled game before opening UEFA EURO 2016 qualifying against the Republic of Ireland on 7 September.

©Getty Images

Israel celebrate Gil Vermouth's goal

02/06: Honduras 2-4 Israel
Israel brought an end to a 12-month wait for a victory as they overcame Honduras in Houston, Texas – having beaten the same opponents by two goals a year to the day earlier, in New York. Roger Espinoza cancelled out Eran Zahavi's 34th-minute opener – a fine, long-range drive – at the start of the second half, but Hull City AFC defender Maynor Figueroa deflected Tal Ben Haim's shot into his own net to restore Eli Gutman's side's advantage. Hapoel Tel-Aviv FC team-mates Omer Damari and Gil Vermouth extended Israel's lead before Carlo Costly struck back.

01/06: United States 2-1 Turkey
Turkey slipped to defeat in New Jersey after conceding a goal in either half. Fatih Terim's troops carved out the first meaningful chance of the game when Nuri Şahin shot against Tim Howard's post, but it was the hosts who took the lead on 26 minutes, Fabian Johnson turning in from Michael Bradley's lobbed pass. Clint Dempsey then increased the deficit shortly after the interval, with Selçuk İnan hitting a last-minute consolation effort from the penalty spot after Geoff Cameron had been penalised for handball. "Had we converted one of our chances to score, the result could have gone the other way," said Terim afterwards.

01/06: Panama 1-1 Serbia
Concluding their brief tour in the United States, Serbia went ahead on 25 minutes in Bridgeview, Illinois, when Chelsea FC defender Branislav Ivanović headed in from a corner. It was not enough to secure victory, however, as Gabriel Gómez nodded in an equaliser on the hour mark. Ljubinko Drulović's men dominated the encounter but were unable to re-establish their lead despite a late red card for Panama's Carlos Rodríguez, with Aleksandar Mitrović spurning two chances and Darko Lazović also falling short. Serbia take on Brazil in Sao Paolo on Friday in their final friendly this term.

Last updated: 05/06/14 8.40CET

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