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Clinical Stancu fires Romania past Finland

Finland 0-2 Romania
Bogdan Stancu hit both goals for the visitors who secured the three points in Helsinki to move above the hosts into second in Group F.

Highlights: Finland v Romania

Bogdan Stancu double gives Romania valuable win in Helsinki
• Finland fail to recover after losing Alexander Ring to red card
• Visiting captain Răzvan Raţ celebrates victory on 100th appearance
• Romania move above Finland into second in Group F
Next games: Hungary v Finland, Romania v Northern Ireland (14 November)

Romania moved second in UEFA EURO 2016 qualifying Group F as a pair of Bogdan Stancu goals in the second half proved enough to see off ten-man Finland.

The hosts had more of the possession in the opening exchanges but were unable to craft anything meaningful with the ball at their feet; only a Perparim Hetemaj effort from close tested Ciprian Tătăruşanu and the Romanian custodian was up to the task. Neither side were prepared to risk leaving themselves open, so committed few men to attack. It was nip and tuck until the interval, with neither keeper further troubled.

The visitors came out strongly after the restart and the game soon swung decisively their way. In the 54th minute Stancu took off to meet Lucian Sânmărtean's corner and planted a powerful header into the net to break the deadlock. Moments later Alexander Ring picked up his second yellow card to reduce Finland to ten men.

With the man advantage Victor Piturca's team took control and the Finns were restricted to attacking on the counter. Mixu Paatelainen threw on forwards Joel Pohjanpalo and Eero Markkanen in search of an equaliser but numbers told in the end and Romania notched a second with seven minutes to go. Rolled across to the forward 20 metres from goal, Stancu met the ball with a precision side-footed effort which he stroked into the bottom corner in style to seal the points and leave his side two off pacesetters Northern Ireland.

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