Spain beat France, whilst England, Mexico and Uruguay stumble in World Cup qualifiers
Published: 03.04.13 / Written by: David Gold
Spain beat France in Tuesday night’s big World Cup qualifier, Pedro scoring the only goal of the game early in the second half.
That means that Spain, who were held 1-1 by Finland on Friday, are now top of their group and in control of their destiny once again.
England were held 1-1 by Montenegro in another big qualifying game, as they remain two points behind their opponents going into the final four qualifiers. England are also now under pressure for second from Poland, who beat San Marino 5-0, and Ukraine, who beat Moldova 2-1.
In Group A Belgium beat Macedonia 1-0 to remain top of the group, just ahead of Croatia, who took a 2-1 win from Wales with a late winner. Serbia beat Scotland 2-0. Germany beat Kazakhstan 4-1 to stay in charge of their group, whilst Sweden were joined on points by the Republic of Ireland and Austria after they played out a 2-2 draw in Dublin. Italy beat Malta 2-0 to similarly remain in charge of their group, with Bulgaria and Denmark drawing 1-1. Czech Republic cruised to a 3-0 win in Armenia.
Portugal got back on track with a 2-0 win over Azerbaijan, but remain third after Israel defeated Northern Ireland by the same scoreline. The Netherlands’ 4-0 win over Romania keeps them ahead of Hungary, who drew 1-1 with fellow challengers Turkey.
In South American qualifying group leaders Argentina remain firmly in control of the qualifying group despite a 1-1 draw in high altitude in La Paz against Bolivia. They are clear of Colombia in second, who were beaten 1-0 by Venezuela, who are up to fifth and in contention to qualify. Ecuador remain third after thrashing bottom of the table Paraguay 4-1. Uruguay’s hopes took a huge blow as Chile beat them 2-0 to leapfrog the two times World Cup winners.
In North America, Panama beat Honduras 2-0 to leapfrog the previous leaders of the qualifying group and take a shock lead of qualifying after three games. Honduras are level with Costa Rica, who beat Jamaica 2-0, and the United States, held 0-0 by Mexico.
In Asian qualifying Jordan secured a priceless 2-1 win over Japan that means they move ahead of Australia into second place in their qualifying group. Japan are still set to qualify for Brazil but the Australians now have an uphill task on their hands to make it. Australia could only draw 2-2 at home to Oman. Elsewhere South Korea took another step to qualifying with a 2-1 win over Qatar, whilst Uzbekistan beat Lebanon 1-0.
In Africa Egypt beat Zimbabwe 2-1 thanks to a late goal, meaning they remain clear at the top of their qualifying group and in contention for a place in Brazil next year. Egypt’s neighbours Algeria beat Benin 3-1.