Another busy slate of international fixtures on Monday and Tuesday brought more success for our players away with their nations.
Halil Dervişoğlu made it four goals in five days, scoring the opener during Turkey Under-21’s 3-0 European Championship Qualifying win over Kosovo in Samsum. The 20-year-old striker came into the game fresh from a hat-trick against Austria and carried on that form with a crisp early finish. Kosovo were reduced to ten men on the half-hour and Turkey took full advantage after that to record back-to-back wins. Halil was taken off after 70 minutes and ends qualifying with seven goals in nine games as Turkey finished fourth in Group C.
In the same group, Josh Dasilva registered an assist off the bench during England’s 5-0 win over Albania at Molineux. Two for Eddie Nketiah, the second of which Josh set-up, helped Aidy Boothroyd’s side record a ninth win in ten qualifiers. The 15-minute cameo was Josh’s fifth outing for the Young Lions, all of which have come in this successful qualification process.
Mads Bech Sorensen earned his sixth cap for Denmark’s Under-21s as they ended their unbeaten Qualifying campaign with a 1-1 draw against Romania in Ploiești. Nikolai Laursen put The Danes ahead five minutes into the second-half but they were reduced to ten men shortly after when Sebastian Hausner saw red. Romania equalised through Valentin Costache 18 minutes from time as the hosts joined Denmark in next year’s finals.
Tariqe Fosu played the full 90 minutes as Ghana suffered a surprise defeat in Africa Cup of Nations Qualifying to Sudan. The Black Stars won Thursday’s first meeting 2-0 to make it nine points from nine in Group C but were downed yesterday afternoon by Mohammed Abdul Rahman’s 90th-minute effort in Omdurman. Ghana remain top of their pool, level on points with South Africa, and three clear of Sudan, with two to play. The appearance was Tariqe’s fourth for his nation, all of them starts. Qualification for the finals in Cameroon will be confirmed as long as Ghana take four points from matches against South Africa and Sao Tome and Principe in March.
Also in Africa Cup of Nations Qualifying, Saïd Benrahma started for Algeria as the reigning Champions booked their spot in the finals following a 2-2 draw against Zimbabwe. Saïd supplied the ball for Riyad Mahrez to make it 2-0 but the home side hit back with two goals after the break to earn a point in Harare. Despite that Les Verts are safely through with ten points from four matches. The cap was Saïd’s sixth for his nation as he played 73 minutes before being substituted.
Joe Adams remained an unused substitute as Wales Under-21 ended their Group I campaign with a creditable 2-1 defeat in Germany. It looked like it would be a long night in Braunschweig as the unbeaten group leaders netted twice, and missed a penalty in the opening 25 minutes, but Wales pulled one back ten minutes before the interval. Both sides had chances after the break but there were no more goals as Wales ended the qualifying campaign in fourth.