|1||Mäenpää (GK)||12||Veremko (GK) (C)|
|12||Hradecky (GK)||22||Gutor (GK)|
|23||Sillanpää (GK)||1||Chernik (GK)|
|Mixu Paatelainen (FIN)||Georgi Kondratiev (BLR)|
|Eli Hacmon (ISR)|
|G||Latvia||Bosnia and Herzegovina|
|C||Republic of Ireland||Faroe Islands|
Finland got their first win in FIFA World Cup qualifying Group I courtesy of a Sergei Veremko own goal, moving off the bottom of the table to be replaced by opponents Belarus.
In an even encounter at the Olympic Stadium in Helsinki it was the hosts who got the decisive luck. Belarus goalkeeper Veremko fumbled the ball into his own net in the 57th minute, under pressure from Kasper Hämäläinen, to hand Mixu Paatelainen's men their maiden victory in the group.
Chances were few and far between in the opening period, with neither keeper called into action, but the pace picked up considerably in the second half. Anton Putilo supplied the threat for the visitors throughout, but a combination of wayward shooting and a command performance from Niki Mäenpää in the home goal, meant Belarus could not find a breakthrough.
Roman Eremenko's low cross provided the ammunition for Veremko to shoot himself in the foot just before the hour, the Belarusian captain's own goal proving the difference in the end. Belarus flew forward in search of an equaliser in the dying moments, but by doing so left themselves open at the back; however, Eremenko took too long to pull the trigger as he failed to finish off a rapid Finland counter.
The miss made no difference, though Georgi Kondratiev's side will not have long to wait to try and redeem themselves: the countries meet again in four days' time in Gomel, where Belarus can seek revenge.
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