Play-off for Final Tournament, First leg - 15/11/2013 - 20:00CET (19:00 local time) - Laugardalsvöllur - Reykjavik
0-0
 

Iceland - Croatia 0-0 - 15/11/2013 - Match page - FIFA World Cup 2014

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Ten-man Iceland keep Croatia at bay

Published: Friday 15 November 2013, 23.17CET
Iceland 0-0 Croatia 
It will be as you were when the sides reconvene on Tuesday after Iceland survived 40 minutes with ten men following Ólafur Skúlason's red card.
by Stefán Stefánsson
Ten-man Iceland keep Croatia at bay
Luka Modrić and Gylfi Sigurdsson compete in the air in Reykjavik ©Getty Images

Match statistics

IcelandCroatia

Goals scored0
 
0
Total attempts4
 
13
Attempts on target1
 
6
off target1
 
4
against woodwork0
 
0
Corners3
 
4
Offsides0
1
Yellow cards0
 
0
Red Cards1
 
0
Fouls committed15
 
18
Fouls suffered14
 
15

Standings

Published: Friday 15 November 2013, 23.17CET

Ten-man Iceland keep Croatia at bay

Iceland 0-0 Croatia 
It will be as you were when the sides reconvene on Tuesday after Iceland survived 40 minutes with ten men following Ólafur Skúlason's red card.

Iceland coach Lars Lagerbäck said his side "still have a chance" after surviving 40 minutes with ten men to earn a goalless draw against Croatia in the first leg of their FIFA World Cup play-off.

Iceland were posing real problems to their visitors in Reykjavik before Ólafur Skúlason's dismissal soon after the interval turned the game on its head. From then on it was all Croatia, the Balkan team laying siege to the Iceland goal but they could not find a way past keeper Hannes Halldórsson so will start again at 0-0 in Zagreb on Tuesday.

The first half had a very different rhythm, with Iceland keeping their opponents pegged back without really creating clear openings. Croatia seemed content to soak up the pressure and hit on the break, but changed tack at the beginning of the second period as they wrested control and Iceland soon cracked, Skúlason seeing a straight red after bringing down Ivan Perišić.

It was the cue for Niko Kovač's charges to take a firmer grip on proceedings but Iceland, and Halldórsson in particular, held firm. "We can be happy about the result, especially bearing in mind that we were a man down for so long. We would have taken the draw," said Eidur Gudjohnsen, a half-time replacement for the injured Kolbeinn Sigurthórsson. "Keeping a clean sheet was very important."

There were 19 players a yellow card away from a ban this evening but all avoided a booking, so both sides will be almost at full strength when they meet again in four days' time. Skúlason will, of course, be suspended but Iceland coach Lagerbäck welcomes back Birkir Sævarsson from a similar sanction.

Last updated: 16/11/13 0.11CET

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http://www.uefa.com/worldcup/season=2014/matches/round=2000295/match=2008757/postmatch/report/index.html#ten+iceland+hold

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