Honduras, Peru and Australia earned another chance at qualification alongside Oceania winners New Zealand. The first legs both ended goalless, giving Peru and Australia an advantage ahead of the second legs. In Sydney, a Mile Jedinak hat-trick ensured Australia a place in Russia at Honduras’s expense, while Jefferson Farfan and Christian Ramos goals in Lima booked Peru’s place in Russia. … [Read more...] about World Cup 2018: which teams have made it to Russia?
Highlights world cup final
1) Fortress Windsor Park to inspire Northern Ireland again Northern Ireland and Switzerland last met in a competitive fixture in Belfast in 1964, when a home team featuring Pat Jennings, Terry Neill and George Best triumphed 1-0 in a World Cup qualifier at Windsor Park. The current Northern Ireland side boast no players of such high quality, but the indomitable team spirit forged by the manager, Michael O’Neill, in recent years makes them an extremely tough nut to crack at the best of times, particularly when playing in Belfast. Fortress Windsor Park is once again the venue as Northern Ireland resume hostilities with the Swiss in the first leg of a far more significant qualifier on Thursday. For all their delight at being pitted against Switzerland, Northern Ireland fans will be aware their Swiss counterparts will also have been yodelling with delight at the draw. The Swiss boasted a 100% record in their qualifying group until being consigned to the play-offs on goal difference … [Read more...] about World Cup play-offs, final qualifiers and friendlies: 10 things to look out for
Ricardo Gareca is scathing about football in his homeland. “Argentina has the best players in the world,” he said this week, “but they have not made a team and that is the problem they have today.” That’s why the side Gareca manages, Peru, lie above Argentina in the Conmebol standings and it’s why Peru stand on the brink of their first World Cup qualification in 36 years. Gareca has, above all else, made a team. … [Read more...] about Ricardo Gareca edges Peru to the brink of a rare World Cup qualification
“Now, when I am not a part of the team they are playing with less pressure. People are expecting less. When I was there everyone expected that the team would win the World Cup or the Euros. My impression is that that has changed now and that they will play without any pressure whatsoever and have nothing to lose. … [Read more...] about Zlatan Ibrahimovic: my Sweden career is over even if they reach World Cup
Pressure mounted on Cacic halfway through the campaign as Croatia suffered 1-0 defeats in Iceland and Turkey before the draw with Finland allowed Iceland to leap above them. Asked whether Dalic was a long-term choice, Suker said: “Coaches live by their results and we will see what happens. I am confident we can get a result in Ukraine.” … [Read more...] about Croatia sack coach Ante Cacic on eve of final World Cup 2018 qualifier