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FIFA World Cup European Qualifying

City Stadium Skopje (ATT 13,000) 6th September 2013 - Kick off 18:00 Ref: S Kever

Macedonia Macedonia vs Wales Wales

Macedonia 2

I Trickovski (21)
A Trajkovski (80)

ft

Wales 1

A Ramsey (pen 39)

World Cup qualifying: Late Macedonia strike denies Wales a point in Skopje

By Rebecca Stephenson (follow me on Twitter @1rebs).   Last Updated: 06/09/13 11:37pm

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Aaron Ramsey: His penalty was not enough to prevent Wales defeat in Macedonia

Aaron Ramsey: His penalty was not enough to prevent Wales defeat in Macedonia

Gareth Bale watched from the bench as Wales suffered a 2-1 defeat in their first ever visit to Macedonia on Friday.

A goal in the 79th minute from youngster Aleksandar Trajkovski meant the home side leapfrogged their opponents in the lower reaches of World Cup qualifying round Group A.

But Chris Coleman's side more than held their own for large parts of the game that was played on a poor pitch and in an intimidating atmosphere in Skopje.

However the defeat caps a bad few days for Coleman, who also elected not to utilise new Real Madrid signing Bale from the bench even when his side desperately needed a goal during the dying minutes, instead opting for Sam Vokes.

Wales started well on a poor playing surface with Craig Bellamy and Jonathan Williams both looking lively.

But the opening exchanges were not without their scares for the Dragons as Williams survived an appeal for handball, before striker Jovan Kostovski just failed to get on the end of Daniel Georgievski's ball across the six-yard box.

Wales did, however, look the more likely to find an opening goal, but were guilty of not making the most of some good opportunities.

Williams was denied by the advancing Macedonia keeper Tome Pachovski after being released by Joe Ledley, while Bellamy's attempted pull-back to Ramsey was just cut out by a Macedonian foot.

Instead of leading, Wales found themselves behind in the 21st minute. David Vaughan was booked for a foul on Goran Pandev, and when Agim Ibrimi's free-kick cannoned off the Wales wall it fell for Trickovski.

Wales were stunned having looked the more comfortable of the two teams, and they were lucky not to fall further behind five minutes later.

Chris Gunter slipped as Pandev raced into the area and Boaz Myhill was forced to beat away the Napoli forward's drive.

Wales then went within inches of levelling through Bellamy, the Cardiff forward's excellent free-kick had Pachovski beaten, but came back off the post.

But the visitors did equalise seven minutes before the break as Ramsey's lovely turn saw him evade Trickovski who brought him down in the area. The Arsenal midfielder was not ruffled and calmly slotted home.

But Ramsey was involved in an unsavoury incident just before the break as he took a forearm in the throat from Vanche Shikov, and then hit out at Pandev as the Macedonian tried to pull him to his feet.

In the stand-off involving Ramsey, Ashley Williams picked up a yellow card which will rule him out of Tuesday's game with Serbia.

But it did not knock Wales out of their stride duirng a solid start to the second half and Jack Collison had the chance to put them ahead, only to poke wide after more excellent work from Ramsey.

The visitors were now firmly on top, but Macedonia served a reminder of their capabilities when nice work from Georgievski teed up Pandev, but the striker screwed wide with three Welsh defenders closing in on him.

As Wales pushed forward in search of a winner, so they left space for Macedonia to counter, and they were almost punished when a fine break put Trickovski in, but Myhill came out to smother after a poor touch from the forward.

But they were punished with 10 minutes to go, when substitute Trajkovski was given far too much time to advance and pick his spot beyond Myhill from the edge of the area.

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Matches

  • FIFA World Cup European Qualifying

    Fri 6th Sep - Group F
    • Russia
      4 - 1
      Luxembourg
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    • N Ireland
      2 - 4
      Portugal
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      TV
    Fri 6th Sep - Group C
    Fri 6th Sep - Group B
    Fri 6th Sep - Group A
    Fri 6th Sep - Group E
    Fri 6th Sep - Group H
    Fri 6th Sep - Group D
    Fri 6th Sep - Group G
    • Latvia
      2 - 1
      Lithuania
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    • Bos&Herz
      0 - 1
      Slovakia
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    • Liechtenstein
      0 - 1
      Greece
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    Fri 6th Sep - Group I

Tables

FIFA World Cup European Qualifying Group A

FIFA World Cup European Qualifying
Pos Team P Pts
1 Belgium 10 26
2 Croatia 10 17
3 Serbia 10 14
4 Scotland 10 11
5 Wales 10 10
6 Macedonia 10 7

FIFA World Cup European Qualifying Group B

FIFA World Cup European Qualifying
Pos Team P Pts
1 Italy 10 22
2 Denmark 10 16
3 Czech Republic 10 15
4 Bulgaria 10 13
5 Armenia 10 13
6 Malta 10 3

FIFA World Cup European Qualifying Group C

FIFA World Cup European Qualifying
Pos Team P Pts
1 Germany 10 28
2 Sweden 10 20
3 Austria 10 17
4 Republic of Ireland 10 14
5 Kazakhstan 10 5
6 Faroe Islands 10 1

FIFA World Cup European Qualifying Group D

FIFA World Cup European Qualifying
Pos Team P Pts
1 Netherlands 10 28
2 Romania 10 19
3 Hungary 10 17
4 Turkey 10 16
5 Estonia 10 7
6 Andorra 10 0

FIFA World Cup European Qualifying Group E

FIFA World Cup European Qualifying
Pos Team P Pts
1 Switzerland 10 24
2 Iceland 10 17
3 Slovenia 10 15
4 Norway 10 12
5 Albania 10 11
6 Cyprus 10 5

FIFA World Cup European Qualifying Group F

FIFA World Cup European Qualifying
Pos Team P Pts
1 Russia 10 22
2 Portugal 10 21
3 Israel 10 14
4 Azerbaijan 10 9
5 Northern Ireland 10 7
6 Luxembourg 10 6

FIFA World Cup European Qualifying Group G

FIFA World Cup European Qualifying
Pos Team P Pts
1 Bosnia and Herzegovina 10 25
2 Greece 10 25
3 Slovakia 10 13
4 Lithuania 10 11
5 Latvia 10 8
6 Liechtenstein 10 2

FIFA World Cup European Qualifying Group H

FIFA World Cup European Qualifying
Pos Team P Pts
1 England 10 22
2 Ukraine 10 21
3 Montenegro 10 15
4 Poland 10 13
5 Moldova 10 11
6 San Marino 10 0

FIFA World Cup European Qualifying Group I

FIFA World Cup European Qualifying
Pos Team P Pts
1 Spain 8 20
2 France 8 17
3 Finland 8 9
4 Georgia 8 5
5 Belarus 8 4

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