Slovakia are four points clear at the top of Group 7 after a 1-0 victory away to bottom side Cyprus, maintaining the only unbeaten record in a highly-competitive UEFA European Under-21 Championship qualification section.
Croatia's 3-1 victory over Serbia on Tuesday meant both those sides trailed Slovakia by a solitary point ahead of the game in Famagusta, but a 46th-minute winner from the promising Miroslav Stoch increased the visitors' cushion and condemned Cyprus to a fourth straight defeat in the phase.
Boris Kitka's side had been in control of the match even before Stoch unleashed a 25-metre drive that sped past Tasos Kissas to settle the contest. Few other chances were created and the home side were reduced to ten men in added time when Kostas Markou picked up a second yellow card for a foul on Martin Baran. Slovakia's ten-point haul has come from four matches with Cyprus seven adrift having played a game more. Croatia and Serbia are four behind the leaders having played three and four fixtures respectively. Croatia provide the next visitors for both Cyprus and Slovakia on 14 and 18 November respectively.