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Turkey recover ground with Austria win

Turkey 2-0 Austria
Goals from Arda Turan and Gökhan Gönül were enough for Guus Hiddink's men to prevail in Group A on a rainy night in Istanbul.

Arda Turan (centre) celebrates his goal
Arda Turan (centre) celebrates his goal ©Getty Images

Turkey ended a run of two straight UEFA EURO 2012 Group A defeats without scoring as Arda Turan and Gökhan Gönül made their mark to send Austria home with a 2-0 defeat.

Beaten by Germany and Azerbaijan in their last two qualifiers, Turkey recovered their poise amid heavy rain at the Şükrü Saracoğlu Stadium. Arda scored after positioning himself cleverly to receive a 28th-minute corner, and Gökhan Gönül made it 2-0 with 12 minutes left. Volkan Demirel saved a penalty from Stefan Maierhofer to cap a fine night for the home side.

A downpour at kick-off did not dampen Turkey's ardour, and Burak Yılmaz beat Jürgen Macho after four minutes, only for his shot to bounce back off the post. The Austria goalkeeper was in action again within minutes as Hamit Altıntop tried his luck on the volley. Arda and Hamit had further chances to score before the former made the breakthrough.

Turkey lowered the tempo for the final minutes of the half, but were doubtless reminded that they might have scored more by coach Hiddink at half-time, emerging for the second period with fire in their bellies. Burak, Arda and Nuri Şahin kept plugging away, but Austria had begun to show some menace when Gökhan Gönül stole through to score Turkey's second.

A consolation goal looked to be in prospect when Austria were awarded a spot kick, but Volkan completed a decent night's work with a save from Maierhofer.