Cologne – Romania took the lead in the race for the qualifying place in Germany’s Group X in the European qualifiers for the 2022 World Cup after national coach Hansi Flick’s team jumped to the finals in Qatar. The Eastern European team won three days after losing 2-1 in Hamburg to Germany in front of their home fans against their opponents Armenia 1-0 (1-0) and moved up to second place in North Macedonia.
In the last two rounds, Romania was behind the group winner Germany, which has already been decided, by one point ahead of North Macedonia and Armenia with the same number of points. Thus, Romania can qualify for the play-offs in the last two matches against Iceland (November 11) and Liechtenstein (November 14) alone, especially since Armenia and North Macedonia meet in a head-to-head duel in the penultimate round. Despite 4:0 (2:0) against Liechtenstein in fifth place in the table, Iceland has only theoretical chances.
Mitrita shoots Romania to victory
Alexandru Ionot Mitrita was Romania’s starting player against Armenia, who hosted former world champions Germany in their last group match. Greek top-flight club striker Pauk Thessaloniki scored the important winning goal for the hosts after just 26 minutes.
Iceland advanced through Stefan Titor Thordarsson after 19 minutes. Ten minutes before the end of the first half, Albert Gudmundsson’s penalty kick already meant the decision was taken against the still winless guests, before the Dutch Legion of former Dutch champions Alkmaar with their second goal (79) and Andrei Gudjohnsen (89) increased the score even more. The Icelanders have to compete in North Macedonia at the end of the World Cup elimination after a guest appearance in Romania.
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