FYR Macedonia 0-2 Slovakia
Juraj Kucka and Adam Nemec struck in the first half for the visitors as the Group C leaders recorded their fourth victory in succession, in Skopje.
Article top media content
• First-half strikes by Juraj Kucka and Adam Nemec seal away success
• Victory in Skopje maintains Slovakia's 100% start to Group C
• Visitors three points clear of second-placed Spain
• First home defeat for FYR Macedonia in this campaign
• Next games: FYR Macedonia v Belarus, Slovakia v Luxembourg (27 March)
Slovakia maintained their perfect start to UEFA EURO 2016 qualifying Group C, posting their fourth win in succession, dispatching the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia 2-0 in Skopje.
Despite recording more attempts throughout the game, the hosts fell to their first home defeat of the campaign after first-half goals from Juraj Kucka (25) and Adam Nemec (38) sealed victory for the visitors.
Marek Hamšík, who scored a double for Slovakia in Belarus on matchday three, had the first opportunity of the tie. The midfielder failed to hit the target with his sixth-minute strike as Ján Kozák's team took the early initiative. However, Boshko Djurovski's side responded immediately through Krste Velkoski and Besart Abdurahimi although neither player could test Matúš Kozáčik in the away goal.
A 16th-minute Vladimír Weiss free-kick presented Tomáš Hubočan with the next opening but he blazed his effort over after the Crveno-Zholti failed to clear the cross. Kozáčik produced a smart stop from Velkoski from distance as the group rivals traded blows. And two minutes later the pacesetters took the lead as Kucka tapped in Weiss's right-wing centre from point-blank range at the far post.
Slovakia doubled their advantage before the interval as Nemec netted for the first time this term. The forward finished in style after Miroslav Stoch's 38th-minute left-wing cross found him in space inside the area. The Macedonians almost hit straight back, Aleksandar Trajkovski's free-kick crashing against the bar and Arijan Ademi troubling Kozáčik before the break.
FYR Macedonia came out with fresh determination at the restart, Abdurahimi soon shooting wide. However, the Slovaks responded by forcing a good save from Tome Pacovski. The unlucky Trajkovski was denied by the woodwork for a second time following another free-kick which almost gave his team a route back into the game. The attacker would be repelled again by Kozáčik moments later as his frustrating night continued – and the keeper duly held onto his clean sheet.