Friday, September 6, 2013

Czechs blow it, Russia takes big step towards Brazil

First of many matches slated for today provides drama

Couldn't ask for a better finish in Group B play. Czech Republic had the perfect opportunity to jump into second place over Bulgaria with a match at home against Armenia. Italy sits at the summit of this group.

But Chelsea's Petr Cech couldn't do anything on the first goal by the Armenians--pure brilliance--and Arsenal's Tomas Rosicky's strike for Czech Republic to bring the game level wasn't enough to even snatch a home draw. Gevorg Ghazaryan netted an injury time winner to break the Czech supporters' collective hearts.

Meanwhile, Fabio Capello's Russia had no trouble with bottomfeeders Luxembourg as they were comfortable in a 4-1 mark at home behind a brace by Dynamo Moscow's youngster Aleksandr Kokorin. They're at the top of the table in Group F but Portugal, a point behind, visit Northern Ireland.

In Group C, although both are out of the running, Kazakhstan got its first win in qualifying this year as they dispatched fellow minnows Faroe Islands 2-1. Is nice!